June 27, 2012 - Today, Thunder Bay’s Food Action Network launched the 2012 Get Fresh! campaign at the Thunder Bay Country Market to promote the benefits of buying foods produced close to home.
The event featured local chef Nikos Mantis of Pinetree Catering demonstrating three delicious dishes using local food available at the Country Market.
"As a chef and food service provider, I find it very important to source local. If you get fresh, great tasting ingredients, it’s pretty hard to go wrong," says Mantis.
This year’s Get Fresh! campaign encourages residents to "taste the difference local makes." Beyond the superior flavour and quality provided by local food, there are many other benefits to buying locally produced food: it’s fresh, nutritious, keeps money in the local economy, supports local growers, uses less packaging and uses less fossil fuel for transport.
A key feature of the campaign is the newly revised Get Fresh! guide. The popular guide - now in its fifth edition - lists local producers who sell direct in the Thunder Bay area.
"This year’s guide includes more restaurants and caterers who make an effort to source local food," says Catherine Schwartz-Mendez, public health nutritionist at TBDHU. "It’s important to recognize the local businesses that go the extra mile to support the local food system. Look for the thumbs up symbol at your favourite establishments to know who they are."
Copies of the new Get Fresh! guide can be picked up at the Thunder Bay Country Market, at www.nwofood.ca, and at special events throughout the summer.
Another important part of the campaign is the annual summer workshop series being offered throughout the growing season to help participants preserve local finds and eat with the seasons. Workshops are free and held at various locations throughout the City. The workshop schedule is also available at www.nwofood.ca.
The Food Action Network brings many groups together to improve access to enough affordable, nutritious, safe, environmentally sustainable food for all. Its purpose is to create awareness, support food projects, advocate for policies that support community food security, and act as an information centre for community food security in the District of Thunder Bay. It also promotes locally produced food.