Submitted Article and Photo
Cornwall Ontario — The inaugural ten-day local food challenge of Cornwall Stormont, Dundas, Glengarry, Prescott and Russell counties has officially wrapped-up. The challenge, which asked residents to sign up online and track their local food consumption for ten days, drew nearly 200 registrants in total across the five counties.
The initiative also partnered with local food businesses in SDG&PR including farmers, farmers markets and restaurants. Local food prizes, donated by event partners, were awarded to those who participated in the daily challenges, used the #eatSDGPR hashtag, posted to the social media feeds, or completed the post-event survey. The challenges and prizes were meant to encourage active participation through social media by completing tasks like sharing photos or recipes, and also as a way to get residents to try local food products they otherwise might not like wild boar or purple corn. Prizes are still to be awarded for the completion of the post-challenge survey which is integral to helping the organizers understand the value and impact of the challenge and help plan for next year and will be live until Thursday August 27th.
The challenge also featured workshops, tours, and tastings offered by community groups and businesses. Workshops offered tips and tricks of cooking with local food, including a children’s workshop and a cooking out of the Green Food Box workshop. Tours of farms like Smart Greens Hydroponics and Whaley’s Acres offered a chance to
see the local food production process up close. Avonmore Berry Farm also hosted a very successful Farm-to-Table dinner prepared by Chef Julia, Quirky Carrot and Chef Brence, Beau’s All Natural Brewing, which featured produce from many of the challenge partners.
Though the ten day event has officially passed, organisers hope that participants and other residents will continue to use the website and social media pages as resources for the local food habits which they hope were established and/or encouraged during the challenge. The collaborative nature of the project has created a wealth of information. The website includes links to pages of all of the local food partners in all counties, as well as recipes and photos sent in by participants throughout the challenge.