Chef and Media Tour Showcases Saskatchewan Farming and Food
(SASKATOON, SK) "Getting to know farmers means getting to know food." That's the idea behind the Taste the Land of Living Skies Farm Tours program hosted by Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan (FFC SK).
More than 65 national and international food experts, including food writers, culinary academics and chefs, as well as farmers and ranchers and others explored farms and food facilities in the Saskatoon area this week. Organizers were also very pleased to have strong participation from students of the Culinary Arts program at Saskatchewan Polytechnic.
"Today, more than ever, people want to know where their food comes from. They want to understand how their food is grown, and be reassured that what they eat is produced with care," said Adele Buettner, CEO of FFC SK, a group that works with thousands of crop and livestock farmers, chefs and businesses in the province. "As people involved in food production, we're hoping that by sharing our story with culinary writers and chefs, we'll help promote a better understanding and appreciation of food and farming in Saskatchewan."
The tours kicked off with a welcome reception and Buettner pumped up registrants with facts about Saskatchewan's role as a world leader in food production, while Dr. Joe Schwarcz of McGill University got people thinking about how science and research is perceived with relation to food.
The next two full days were spent touring farms and various businesses in the Saskatoon area, including Grasslakes Farms, Star Egg Company, Great Western Brewing, Tierra Del Sol Farms, InfraReady Products and the Elkrest Dairy Farm near Osler.
"Less than 2 per cent of people are involved in farming, yet 100% of us eat. That's why it's so important that everyone appreciates where our food comes from and how it is produced," said Amy Myrdal Miller, president of Farmer's Daughter Consulting, a food and culinary communications firm based in California.
"Shaking hands with the farmers makes it real," added Anthony McCarthy, Executive Chef at Saskatoon Club and president of the Saskatoon branch of the Canadian Culinary Federation.
"Our intent is to build relationships with key people who influence consumers and the food they eat. It's also a tremendous opportunity to showcase the abundance of Saskatchewan-grown foods that we produce," explained Buettner of FFC SK, noting that 2015 was the first in what is hoped will become an annual event.
Sponsors of this year's tours included Chicken Farmers of Saskatchewan, CropLife, Saskatchewan Cattlemen's Association, Saskatchewan Egg Producers, Sask Mustard, SaskCanola, SaskFlax, SaskMilk, Sask Pulse Growers, Sask Wheat, Great Western Brewing Company, Saskatoon Chefs Association, Regina Chefs Association and the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture.
For more information, contact:
CEO, FFC SK
Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan represents producer groups from livestock to crops and horticulture as well as chefs, businesses, government and all those with a passion for food in this province. We serve to cultivate awareness and appreciation of agriculture in the province with the belief that getting to know farmers equals getting to know food. FFC SK strives to find new and innovative ways to introduce producers to their customers and consumers to their food producers, and provide the facts on agriculture.