Thursday, June 12, 2014

Sunrise Tuscan Chicken & Food Talk

My second day at the Real Food Real Local Institute included a shout out to a local Athenian, Abby Cornwell whose entrée Sunrise Tuscan Chicken was submitted to Michelle Obama's Let's Move's Healthy Lunchtime Challenge earlier this year. Abby is the State of Ohio winner. She and her mother will be traveling to the White House for a "State Dinner" with Michelle Obama (see it here).

I connected with Ohio University Food Studies initiative leader, Theresa Moran. She mentioned several local events on the theme (keep an eye out for more events in the fall) and recommended readings like Consider the Fork by Bee Wilson

Did you know that Athens is one of the hubs of hipness in Ohio?

Tourism Ohio talked about branding work and the economic impact of tourism trends in Ohio based on food, history, and unique distinctive experiences. Their current marketing themes linclude "Sharing a 30 mile meal" and "Too much fun for just one day." 

The key note speaker, Anthony Flaccavento, spoke about local food as a movement. His term about the "vaguely concerned, sporadically motivated" was about cultivating the next layer of food citizens. One success tactic that he has seen across the USA, Community Supported Agriculture groups brining fresh produce to work sites. We talked about trusting the experience of good food to speak for itself, but the trick is finding easy ways to get the food into people and then allowing them to form their own opinion without ruining it by preaching. 

Athens County Commissioner and local farmer Chris Chmiel spoke about Athens County and Athens City participating in energy conservation and energy competition, Georgetown University Energy Prize, worth $5 million dollars to the community that wins. Athens, Ohio, is throwing its hat into the game which begins 1 January, 2015,  and it will be wagered for two years, stay tuned. Locals can find information on renewable energy through ARECC.

Abby Cornwell's winning Ohio entry for Healthy School Lunch contest!