Food for Thought

Last night was Green Drinks at Trattoria il Centro (beware of the music on the Trattoria site). This time we learned a bit about permaculture and organic gardening in Oklahoma. There was also a seed exchange; I traded purple coneflower seeds for an awesome book on off-grid living and some cucumber, cherry tomato, and cinnamon basil seeds. What fun!

I asked the bartender if I could have their empty wine bottles and he was happy to help out. I got about seven last night and later in the week I will go back for more. I love the juice, but not enough to get this project done anytime soon! I’m using the bottles for a landscape border; pictures will eventually be posted.

Food costs are making headlines. Industrial food prices are getting high enough that local food prices might seem comparable—but that doesn’t mean that it will be any more of an option for poor people, or any more attractive for people that don’t have a sizable food budget. Tom Philpott of Grist.org addresses other options in his article that takes Michael Pollan and Alice Waters to task. He thinks that high industrial food prices will push people to McDonald’s, rather than to the farmers’ market. I’ve been analyzing my food budget and have been shocked at the amount of money it takes to feed 2 people. What will we do when we have a kiddo? Some ideas have been to buy larger cuts of meat, buying and cooking in bulk, spicing up leftovers, and freezing meals. We already do some of this, but I want to kick it up a notch. Another thing, it wouldn’t hurt to just eat less. I don’t want to seem like I am romanticizing poverty; I am grateful that at this point, I have the choice to eat less—that it isn’t a necessary tactic to survive.

A complementary article comes from Governing, a magazine for local and state governments. I hope lots of policymakers read this and see the potential and the increasing demand for local food. I feel pretty optimistic about Oklahoma, especially with House Bill 2833, the farm-to-school program, the statewide food cooperative, and the success of retailers specializing in local products.

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