Farm to Table Conference coming to CBU Feb. 4
The fourth annual Mid-South Farm to Table Conference will be held Feb. 4 at Christian Brothers University. The conference is designed to provide a forum for farmers, consumers, entrepreneurs and other interested groups to discuss ideas for developing the local food system of Memphis and the Mid-South.
Founded in 2011, The Mid-South Farm to Table Conference was established with the vision that a thriving local food system will strengthen farmer livelihoods by connecting more farmers to local consumers; will improve access to fresh produce and increase healthy food consumption; and will stimulate economic development and job creation in the region.
This year the conference will include a set of panels designed specifically for farmers, including farm profitability and mushroom cultivation as well as sessions on the great work being done to increase food access in Memphis’ poorest neighborhoods. Additionally, a group of “urban homesteaders” will discuss things you can do in your own backyard, while academics and theologians will discuss the work being done around food by universities and churches.
Two plenary sessions anchor the conference. Nat Turner will discuss growing food in New Orleans’ Lower 9th Ward as part of his project “Our School at Blair Grocery,” while chef Miles McMath will present how he has not only integrated local food into the cafeteria at St. Jude, but also his personal passion for raising and growing his own animals and crops.
Now in its fourth year, the conference began in 2011 as a simple gathering of farmers, foodies, chefs, and community advocates determined to find a way to build a more robust local food system. Four years later the conference has become an integral annual event for anyone involved with or interested in local food. The growth in the conference in just four years is a testament to how entrenched local food has become in Memphis.
“Four years ago, Mary Phillips (conference committee member) basically invited as many farmers, chefs, and gardeners as she knew to sit down and brainstorm ways that they could work together to make Memphis a better place through food,” reflects Chris Peterson, executive director of GrowMemphis and committee member for the conference. “Now, we’ve got the eyes and ears of government officials and regional partners, which shows just how seriously Memphis has started to take food.”
Registration fee is $25, which includes breakfast, lunch, and evening reception. Visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/537671to purchase tickets. Students can contact Sean MacInnes (email@example.com) for a special rate.
Find out more at http://midsouthfarmtotable.wordpress.com/