Farm to Table Restaurants

Farmer and chef share their unique perspectives on locally grown food and meat provided for farm to table restaurants.

| July/August 2012

Staying connected to family and friends requires only a few clicks on a computer, tablet or phone. But how do people stay connected to the land and the food they eat?

Grocery stores usually indicate where their produce is grown, and, with few exceptions, it’s an eye-opener to realize how little of the food available is actually grown locally. It didn’t take long for the American consumer to become enamored with relatively inexpensive fruits and vegetables that appear in stores year-round. And at local restaurants, patrons enjoy the chef’s artistry with all ingredients, not just items produced locally.

Then, Americans started asking themselves about the quality of the produce and living conditions for the animals that end up in the butcher’s meat case.

Those who grow their own food know that tomatoes fresh from the vine taste like, well, tomatoes, and fresh asparagus is actually sweet. Food connoisseurs know that strawberries from a local farmers’ market have the thick, juicy flavor missing from store-bought berries. People are learning that locally grown food tastes better, and that when animals are raised in humane conditions, the meat they provide is of a higher quality.

Hearing the chef and farmer talk of this connection sheds greater understanding on the process for consumers.

Farm to table restaurants: the farmer

One definite advantage to a farmer working directly with a chef or cook is that both parties get input into how animals and plants are raised and sent to market.

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