2017 Local Food Month

While every month is local food month for some of us, the effort to draw focused attention to all of the wonderful local products is especially noticeable in September.  All over the country people are celebrating the bounty that comes from their region and in Humboldt we are are rich with all types of food in the month of September.

Years ago when the Eat Local Challenge began I participated and, excluding only a handful of ingredients, was able to complete the challenge.  For me, that challenge just helped me to think more consciously about the foods that I eat — and to develop a plan for acquiring those foods (like albacore tuna, canning 100 lbs of whole fish each year), and to incorporate them throughout the year.

There are many activities planned this year and you can go to the website to check them out.

Listen to the interview here with Ivy North (NCGA – Farmers Market) and Ann Anderson (Locally Delicious).

Erin Derden-Little, Community Alliance With Family Farmers

There are so many items that are heavily processed — items that loosely fit the description “food” since they are mostly by processing the real food right out of them — and the companies that make these foods spend more to market these items than what they spend for the ingredients that go into them.  Now let’s look at the lowly beet…delicious to many, unknown entirely to many more…who is speaking up for the beet, and for the beet farmer?  Well the Community Alliance With Family Farmers (CAFF)  is one of the organizations that is working on this very issue.  And — our very own Erin Derden-Little is at the forefront of this effort.  Erin leads the Know Your Farmer and Farm to Cafeteria Programs in the Humboldt Region. One of the things those big-time marketing agencies knows is that you must make it as easy as possible for people to purchase you product — and Erin has been working hard to make this a reality in Humboldt.  To find out more, check out the website for CAFF — and listen to the interview with Erin.

Siobhan and Geoff, Black Sheep Farm

Black Sheep Farm is on a small plot of land in Bayside, run by two people who do a lot of the work the old fashioned way…by hand.  Siobhan and Geoff are two escapees from the world beyond Humboldt where everyone strives to make more money than their neighbor and no one knows how much is enough — I say all this because I am very familiar with that world which is the reason I live here!  Check out their website — especially their recipe section (oh yes, the photo section is beautiful too)…they use the term “curate” to talk about how they prepare the food, and their simple food becomes beautiful works of art in their hands.

the interview

Glee Brandon, Glee the Baker

I had been hearing about Glee for years — so I finally introduced myself at the Farmers Market in Arcata.  Glee is in touch with the farmers who are growing local grains, she mills the grain herself — and makes lots of delicious items using local grains and local produce.  To listen to an interview with Glee, click here.

Calvin Shultz, Rancher and Local Food Advocate

Calvin Shultz is a rancher from Ferndale — many know him as the Stove Man.  That’s how I met Calvin — he carried a gigantic wood stove into our house BY HIMSELF and set it up.  His family has lived in this area for several generation — and he is also part native american, so on that side of his family, forever.  When he talks he reminds me of Joel Salatin — he had truckloads of crab backs from Pacific Seafoods delivered to his farm to enrich his soil and to save it from being trucked down to San Leandro (over 300 miles!) to be disposed of.  Of course…when they started smelling up the neighborhood, he wasn’t very popular!  To listen to a 2-part interview with Calvin —Part 1, Part 2!

2011 Farmers Market Season Update, Portia Bramble

Every year we invite Portia Bramble to give an update of the North Coast Growers Association certified Farmers Markets.  This year she talked about how the growing season went, and the addition of more providers of locally produced meats.  To listen to this interview, click here.

Lindsey Byers, September is Local Food Month

September is Local Food Month and Humboldt County’s Chapter of Community Alliance with Family Farmers plans many events that coordinate with other opportunities like the North Coast Co-op’s Eat Local Challenge.  To hear Lindsey Byers talk about the activities planned for September 2011 click here.

Alisha Stafford, North Coast Co-op

Alisha amidst some beautiful Co-op produce

Alisha Stafford, Assistant Merchandiser at the North Coast Co-op, talks about how she works with local farmers to get farm-fresh produce into the Eureka and Arcata Co-op.  To listen to the interview with Alisha, click here.  You can also go to the Northcoast Co-op website to find out what’s fresh and what’s local.

Heidi Hansen, No Knead Bread

Heidi Hansen is Saint Heidi as far as I’m concerned. 

About 2 years ago, Laina (my co-worker in a previous life) told me about a revolutionary way of making bread.  Everyone loved it, it came out perfect every time.  Now…I make good bread…and have occasionally made great bread — the kind you gobble down as soon as it arrives steamy from the oven with loads of butter…mmmm — (I’m salivating just thinking about it — but, back to the story).  Even though I was pretty sure about my bread skills but thought…what the heck, I can always learn something new.  Laina says that her friend Heidi makes the bread, it’s so easy to make — and involves a dutch oven.  I’m intrigued… and a 12-24 hour first rise and absolutely no kneading.  What?! — Ok — I’m in.

To listen to an interview with St. Heidi, click here — then, go buy a 5 qt cast iron dutch oven if you don’t already have one and start baking!  Seriously beautiful delicious bread (use Shakefork Farm rye and barley flour for 2-3 cups of total flour) that is great warm and as sandwich bread for the rest of the week (really!)

Ron and Shelley Honig, Honey Apple Farms

Ron and Shelley Honig own a beautiful little farm on West End Road on the way between Arcata and Blue Lake — so warm and sunny they can grow some of the crops that make us “coasties” swoon with envy.  To listen to part 1 of a  2-part interview with Ron and Shelley, click here.  For Part 2 click here.

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