Friday, 23 August 2013

Fair Food

This week is Fair Food Week.  I'm a bit late letting you know because it started on the 19th August and runs through to 25th August.  Don't despair though!  I notice that events will continue through until at least the 7th September.

There have been events held right across the country and I am personally amazed at how enthusiastically it has been embraced for a first time event!  Obviously people are very passionate about this issue.
Fair Food Week is the brain child of the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance.  Anybody with an interest in food security should familiarise themselves with this organisation and particularly with the People's Food Plan that they have put together to submit to our government.  They are trying to ensure that our food needs and security are considered long term.
 So that's the background to my personal story here. 

Many people I know are of a belief that being pushy about environmental care is not the way to go.  They believe simply setting an example and hoping others can see the sense and fulfilment of such a lifestyle is the best way. 

While I love the gentleness of this approach, I am probably in the pushy category.  I'm a bit too passionate on the subject and keep talking lots and often on my thoughts.  Still....  I think there is a happy medium.  I guess I look back at the days when I cared about the environment but had no idea whether I could do anything about it, or where to find information or how to meet with like minded people. 

Therefore, I've always wanted to get out there publicly and show the world the beauty, fun and passion involved in caring for our world.  Still I never knew how to go about doing this.

When I saw an email talking about the upcoming Fair Food Week my brain ticked fast!!!  Here it was!  The idea I had been searching for.  OF COURSE!!  FOOD!  That's how to show people about environmental goodness!   I want to share good, healthy food with people I don't even know!!!

I rang a friend with an equal passion for food and the environment, and together we were off. With the backing of our environmental group we plotted and planned our event.  Little did I know that this friend also had experience with organising conventions.  Talk about a stroke of luck.  She seamlessly organised the details and, if I do say so myself, our event was amazing!
 We joined forces with other community groups, local ethical producers and lots of home gardeners.  We gave away info on ethical food, veggie gardening, sustainable seafood and so much more.  We gave away tastings of local goat, lamb, chicken and beef sausages on local bread.  We gave away veggies galore.
We gave away soup made with parsnips and weeds.  Yes weeds!  Parsnip and stinging nettle soup and parsnip and milk thistle soup were on the menu and they were a hit!  So many people asked me for the recipe for the stinging nettle soup in particular.
We also had a kids activity.  We made newspaper pots and my kids made some lovely labels.  Children planted either a sunflower or pea seed to take home. 
 The whole feel was festive!  People came, were confused at first about being offered free food but once they realised there was no scary catch they stayed and chatted, asked questions and just enjoyed being with us!!!

I thought people around our area weren't interested in where our food comes from and the impacts it causes.  I was wrong.  If it hadn't have been for Fair Food Week I may never have found a reason to get out and shout from the rooftops about my love of good, real and fair food!  Thank you Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance.  What a great organisation to know.

I am so grateful to those who shared our vision and the generosity of those who donated veggies, seedlings, time, enthusiasm.....   I think I live in a place where people will soon be coming out of the woodwork.  Where people are keen to see change and will embrace connections and be happy to learn and grow.  Every person who played a part in the day contributed to opening minds and hearts.

'Twas a great day, a personal success, motivating, inspiring and absolutely bloody exhausting!  Life is good!


purplepear said...

So glad your event went so well. Unfortunately we don't have the interested community you have and we had to cancel ours due to lack of interest.28

Linda said...

So sorry Kate! How disappointing! I hadn't seen yours there. What was your event going to be?

Busy mum of 3 said...

How wonderful, excellent and exciting.
I would give my right arm to be involved in a project like that.
Yet again, you inspire me Linda.
One of my secret pipe dreams is to run simple living courses, which covers such a broad range of topics, but food would be a huge component of it. I've been toying with the idea of starting a simple living group, mostly made up of friends to start with, with some info and inspiration maybe I could convert them to my way of thinking, but even if I could just change one little habit in one person I would be happy.
Trouble is I don't know where to start!

Linda said...

Busy Mum. Go for it! Just set a date and email any of your friends that might be interested. Advertise it on your fb page. Contact your neighbourhood/community house and let them know about it. It's a matter of just dong it. The worst that can happen is that no-one comes and the best is that it is well attended and you start a revolution!

purplepear said...

Hi Linda, we were have a farm tour with a peasant style lunch, and the a discussion about the peoples food plan to see where it was up to. Very simple but thought it may have been attended by those who were involved in the two local planning sessions.

Linda said...

What a shame Kate. I would have loved an opportunity to join in a day like that. Who knows, maybe the timing was just wrong this year. Good on you for being a leader in permaculture!

Fiona from Arbordale Farm said...

Congrats on your success. I would love to have attended. And I agree what Kate was proposing sounded fab. I wish my community was so concerned.