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Local Foods Week to Encourage Residents to Buy Fresh and Local Foods

Article from GTR Newspapers

Sustainable Green Country and a host of other groups are encouraging their fellow Oklahomans to join them in celebrating “Local Foods Week” during the week of June 14-21, 2009, pronouncing that local food is a valuable economic asset for the state of Oklahoma. Gov. Brad Henry and Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor made the event official, by means of a proclamation this week!

Created by Sustainable Green Country’s Buy Fresh Buy Local initiative, Local Foods Week festivities will highlight local family farms and farmers’ markets hosting a variety of events, including community garden tours, a farm table dinner, cooking demonstrations, a scavenger hunt for children, a salsa making contest, canning classes, on-the-farm cheese making class with tour, and more. In addition, there will be a special screening of the film “FRESH”. FRESH celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system.

Farmers’ Markets abound in Green Country— Tulsa boasts the Pearl District, Cherry Street, Brookside, North Tulsa and Downtown, plus markets in Owasso, Bartlesville, Jenks, Broken Arrow, Muskogee and others listed in the 2009 Farmers’ Market Guide to Green Country, available at Buy Fresh Buy Local.

Buying local strengthens the local food and farm economy, improves health and revitalizes rural and urban communities. Tulsa metro-area residents spent $2.2 billion on food in 2004. If just five percent of those dollars were redirected to buying local food, this would mean an additional $110 million dollars stays in the Oklahoma economy.

In 2007, Sustainable Green Country, the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture, the Tulsa County Cooperative extension, local nonprofit agencies, tribes, farmers, farmers’ market managers and several volunteers came together to form a Buy Fresh Buy Local chapter. Their goals include promoting the vast array of foods grown in Oklahoma and helping ensure the economic viability of our Oklahoma farmers.

To make it easier for citizens in northeast Oklahoma to find local foods, Buy Fresh Buy Local – Green Country has produced two “local food guides”, two farmers’ market guide brochures and other various marketing materials, as well as assisted with development of six new farmers’ markets in Green Country.

The farms, farmers’ markets and other venues featuring special events during Local Foods Week are listed below.

All Oklahomans are encouraged to celebrate Local Foods Week in some simple way — by shopping a farmers’ market and making a special point to include some locally grown foods in the family’s meals that week. A menu of other ideas for celebrating at home, work or in the community is also available at Buy Fresh Buy Local.

 

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