FEAST! Local Foods SCOOP: October 2020


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Got Local? | Eateries | Fresh & Tasty | Contest Fun! | Who's Fueling FEAST!?

OCTOBER 2020  |  VOL. 3, NO. 4

FEAST Season!

The FEAST! Local Foods Magazine is out—have you snatched a copy yet? Scroll down for the sneak peek, and keep your eyes out for the digital release, coming soon!

This year's hybrid FEAST! Local Foods Marketplace is taking shape, with 40+ local food vendors on board, and sales opening Nov. 8 for pickup Sunday, Dec. 6, at the Graham Park Fairgrounds. Read on for profiles on two of the vendors you'll find in this year's event, and other ways you can enjoy supporting local.

—FEAST! Local Foods Network newsletter team 


Got Local?

American Hazelnut Company

American Hazelnut Co. is a grower-owned cooperative of 23 grower-owners working together to process and market hazelnuts to customers jumping at the chance for a locally-grown, gourmet protein superfood that comes with a chance to participate in an agricultural movement. They’re growing hazelnuts, but also helping change the way we farm in the Upper Midwest—promoting perennial polycultures of woody plants modeled after the oak savanna ecosystem that once thrived in the Upper Midwest, producing nutritious food while protecting clean water and healthy soil.  

Hazelnuts are frequently sourced from Turkey, but American varieties are grown in the Pacific Northwest, and increasingly in the Upper Midwest. AHC is a proud partner and participant in the Upper Midwest Hazelnut Development Initiative, a multi-state collaboration of researchers, growers, and businesses working to develop a viable and sustainable hazelnut industry in our region. Growers do have to compete with squirrels, deer and even birds, however, and once the nuts are harvested, the dehulling process requires expensive equipment. That’s one of the reasons a cooperative of growers makes so much sense. AHC is based out of the Kickapoo Culinary Center in Gays Mills, WI, with grower-owners contributing from Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin. 

AHC has come to FEAST! four of the last five years, and they’re a part of this year’s new Online Marketplace: order any time Nov. 8-29, and pick up at FEAST! Dec. 6.

Did you know?
AHC hazelnut oil and flour are in about 40 stores throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota, and also on their website. "The flour is actually out-selling the oil these days, maybe because of the interest in baking and gluten-free options," Brad says.
Hazelnut oil has a high smoke point of 430, higher than canola, with a high monounsaturated to saturated fat ratio, even better than that of olive oil. The nut meal flour can be used in delicious baked goods, though it requires special care if substituting for wheat flour.

Follow @hazelmania on Facebook



Farm Table Foundation and Restaurant


Farm Table Restaurant in Amery, Wisconsin, lives up to its name, sourcing the majority of its food from 24 farms within 40 miles. They have a mouth-watering array of seasonal menus in a normal year, but of course, this year was anything but normal. Their COVID response included ramping up take-and-bake options—think pot pies, soups, baked goods and pizza, to name a few. They also responded by offering provisions, which was so important in the initial weeks of the shutdowns. “We were able to meet community needs that we weren’t meeting before,” says Mike Schut, program director for the overarching Farm Table Foundation nonprofit that operates the restaurant.


In addition to the restaurant, their staff operates a rich and varied series of instructional workshops. Normally those are held in their learning center with its teaching kitchen and adjacent art gallery. Last year they held over 80 events, including yoga for kids, cooking, baking, soap making, as well as how to raise bees, and workshops for farmers. But this year they had to get creative. Most of their programming went virtual, including their informative and entertaining “Victory Garden” videos—all of which has amounted to a library of over 60 videos on their YouTube channel.


“We think about the community, and what we can offer to serve them,” Mike says.


This many-layered mecca for food and community feels like something we’d all like to have nearby. But, you can still enjoy the restaurant and their socially-distant dining, check out their art gallery, and participate in one of their upcoming virtual classes. And also, consider signing up for their newsletter, give them a follow on Facebook and Instagram, and dive into their YouTube channel to expand your horizons from anywhere!

Photos courtesy Farm Table Foundation

Know Your Farmer

Warm Fields Farm

Lisa Mueller farms in western Wisconsin near Ellsworth, with 2 acres of organic vegetable production in addition to 23 acres of restored prairie and 15 acres of woods. She’s celebrating 25 years on her farm this year, and was excited to add solar power last year. She raises ducks and chickens, grows asparagus, tomatoes and peppers, and makes two value-added products: Golden Sun Salsa and Zesty Pepper Jelly Glaze. The name Warm Fields Farm was taken from the poem Sunday Morning by Wallace Stevens.

Lisa is on the Board for the Red Wing Farmers Market which has championed online ordering, especially since the onset of COVID. She makes deliveries to the nearby communities of Prescott, River Falls, Hudson, Hastings and to select locations in the Twin Cities. Both value-added products are available for purchase at the Whole Earth Grocery in River Falls and Ptacek's IGA in Prescott. If you attended FEAST! last year you might remember sampling her salsa and pepper jelly. "I had so much fun at FEAST last year, meeting other local food producers and talking with a wide range of future customers. I am really looking forward to participating again this year."

You can visit the FEAST! Online Marketplace and place an order for them as soon as Nov. 8 to pick up at the event’s drive-thru in Rochester Dec. 6.

Stay in touch:
Facebook - Instagram 

FEAST! 2020 is getting an early start!

Head to the website starting Sunday, Nov. 8 to peruse 40+ local vendors and place orders online—share the link with friends and family and arrange group purchases, and plan early holiday gifts from the comfort of your couch, or anywhere!

Ticket sales for this year's event will go live on local-feast.org Nov. 8!

Who's Fueling FEAST!?

Lakewinds Food Co-op

Did you know that October is National Co-op Month? 

Grocery co-ops are known for their support of local foods, and among those, Lakewinds Food Co-op has been exemplary. They've been engaged with the happenings of the FEAST! event from the beginning, and you might recall seeing their shopping bags at last year's festival. Lakewinds gives tens of thousands of dollars in grants to local small-scale farmers every year, and they have a Community Giving Round Up program for organizations that help develop local organic food supply chains.

For the month of November, FEAST co-founder Renewing the Countryside will be the Round Up beneficiary, and will be offering FEAST! magazines to customers. Lakewinds supports farmers' markets, farmer education, food business accelerators, and more. If you're in the Twin Cities, or traveling through, be sure to stop by their stores in Richfield, St. Louis Park or Minnetonka, MN.



Food businesses! Did you see that Grow North's Food, Ag Ideas Week has moved to December for 2020?

The Kickoff is Thurs., Dec. 3, followed by a day of educational sessions. Head over to Grow North for details—they're still accepting vendor registrations for their Dec. 4th Real Pitch event in collaboration with Bread and Butter Ventures, and their Dec. 8th BIPOC Virtual Tradeshow featuring sample boxes in collaboration with You Betcha Box. Attendee registration will open soon.

FEAST! Local Foods Magazine Vol.3 is out!

Ask for it at your local co-op, and stay tuned for the release of the digital edition!

The FEAST! Local Foods Marketplace is a production of the FEAST! Local Foods Network, which is always open to new members. Founded by Renewing the Countryside (RTC) and Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF), both the Network and the Marketplace depend on collaboration with partner organizations and individuals.  
The Network supports local food growers and makers by boosting access to financing, peer networking, and sales opportunities. Have a subject we should cover? Hit 'reply' and let us know!
The FEAST! Local Foods Magazine Vol.1 & 2 are available online here.
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  • Elena Byrne
    published this page in FEAST! blog 2020-10-30 15:51:14 -0500


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