Please join the Local Growers Guild and the Bloomington Food Policy Council for this exciting panel discussion as part of Bloomington Lifelong Learning Week on Monday September 8th from 7pm-8:30pm. Panelists include LGG members Mike Record from New Ground Farm, and Larry Howard from Maple Valley Farm. They will be joined by Chef Sasha Divine from No Coast Reserve, and Kroger Public Affairs Manager John Elliott. The discussion will be moderated by Annie Corrigan from Earth Eats. Following the panel, attendees are invited to stay for the Summer Quarterly meeting of the Food Policy Council.
Location: Monroe County Public Library meeting room 1C
Learn more about our panelists.
Every year, the LGG partners with the Bloomington Community Farmer’s Market to coordinate the Indiana Farm Tour at an LGG Member Farm. This year, we’re visiting Moon Valley Farm, a diversified family farm in Gosport, IN. Allen Kitscher and Grace MacNeil grow and raise their animals, vegetables, and medicinal herbs using primarily permaculture-based practices.
The LGG visited Moon Valley Farm to take a few pictures for this year’s Growers’ Guide. We were excited to learn about the farming practices they engage in to conserve the environment and build healthy soils. They rotationally graze their herds of mixed-breed dairy cows, goats, and sheep on a 100% grass-based diet. Their American guinea hogs and chickens eat only local, non-GMO corn and forage. Vegetables and medicinal herbs are grown using organic methods, never using chemicals.
While we were there, Allen was in the midst of constructing a new building on the farm for their new apothecary/holistic herbal education center, which will allow them to offer classes and apprenticeships in the upcoming years. Their farm is home to Monarch Apothecary and Milk Weed Soaps, which offers soaps and herbal products to the community.
The LGG will be greeting folks as they arrive at the farm, with a refreshing local farm beverage for everyone. There will also be wine available later in the evening from LGG Members Oliver Winery. Come say hello and see what we’re up to! The Farm Tour is a wonderful way to connect with other local food eaters and the hard working farmers who provide for our community. We’ll be partaking in an amazing local dinner too. Check out the menu below!
Beer from Function Brewing and Wine from Oliver Winery
Creamy local potato salad w/ fennel and herbs in a creme fraiche dressing
North Carolina style vinegar-dressed Coleslaw
Spicy Szechuan Marinated Carrot Ribbons & Green Beans
Mixed Vegetable Crudite with Basil Goat Cheese Dressing
Harvest Salad – Wheatberries, Chickpeas, Mixed Greens, and Berries in a Blueberry-Chile Dressing (Vegan). Optional additions of Feta and Marinated, Grilled Chicken.
Ratatouille Sliders – Tomato, Herb, and Garlic Roasted Eggplant, Zucchini, and Red Onion on a Challah Bun with Basil Pesto and No Coast Mozzarella.
Korean style lettuce wraps w/ marinated/grilled beef, cucumber kimchi, and green onions
Mini bratwursts on BBC Challah buns w/ bread & butter watermelon rind relish and horseradish mustard on the side
Majarete with Cherry Tomato Compote
Coffee Stout beer float w/ homemade vanilla ice cream
Greetings! We are all deeply enthralled in the growing season, and for most of us, are likely asking ourselves, ‘why again is it that we do this?’ The Indiana humidity makes our labors that much more difficult; spotty rains often pass us by, and the days are never long enough to get everything done. However, when our customers delight in our produce and our root cellars and freezers fill with the fruits of our labor, we are quickly reminded that our way of life, though hard, is about a deep belief in the greater good and the preservation of our environment for generations to come. Simply stated, we believe in what we do – it is a passion and a conviction.
One of the greatest assets of our Guild is bringing together like-minded individuals. The camaraderie of our members is invaluable. It is much better to benefit from the lessons learned by others than to experience them all ourselves. Farmers, in general, are an innovative group. It’s not always the mistakes of others we can learn from, but also their solutions to problems can often be simple, but ingenious.
As we venture to market and are selling to our neighbors, remember to ask others to join us in our cause – become a member. Many exciting things lie ahead for Guild members in the coming year. We are making changes to our member benefits to ensure it’s both a common sense and financially sound decision to join for grower/producers, community members and the business sector as well. More so, we want to make sure it makes NO sense (common or financial) NOT to join.
Be careful when out in the fields – safety should be priority one. And, when you venture to market to purchase our products, remember what goes into growing them. Locally-grown, chemical-free food really can’t be beat!
Be safe, and may it be a prosperous growing season,
Cheryl Carter Jones