I just traveled back to the hallowed halls of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Back when I attended school there, the CIA hardly new what a vegetable was - all veggies were blanched and then sautéed in butter, with no color / caramelization to be added. Viva la French cuisine. But things have definitely changed these days, and I’m proud to see the progress the school has made toward promoting a more renewable food system and the cooking styles that highlight it.
Part of that work can be seen in Menus of Change, a collaboration of university-greats such as Harvard and Stanford, studying and working together toward plant-forward behavior modification and purchasing change for some of the largest schools and universities around the country.
I hope to write more soon about the work of this impressive group of scientists, chefs, food service providers and food activists, but for now just want to give a shout out for a grant program I learned about while attending the Menus of Change conference. Cultivating Change is a local farm grant program empowering the future of farming, providing funding to upgrade operations, invest in food safety, implement sustainable technology, and continue doing what small farms do best: grow.
Cultivating Change is part of Greener Fields Together’s mission to create a sustainable supply chain from seed-to-fork. The program is funded by Greener Fields Together’s network of fresh produce distributors throughout North America who want to invest in the farms that have been the backbone of our communities for generations. This year $75,000 in grant awards were distributed to growers.
They are looking for new farmers to fund next year, and because this program is relatively unknown – it could be an easy effort to obtain badly needed funds for any of the many small farms that grace the Bay Area and beyond.
Check out more info on the website , or pass this Food Party! link onto your favorite farmer at your local farmers market.
Let’s change the world with great tasting food!