All food that reaches your plate has been on a journey.
And you may be surprised by just how far it has travelled!
According to a Research Gate report, 30% of Canada’s agricultural and food commodities are imported. This equates to over 61 billion tonnes/kilometre worth of ‘food miles’, leading to 3.3 million metric tonnes of CO2 emissions every single year!
At BReD, we know we can do better. We aim to choose ingredients that have travelled as few miles as possible to reduce our carbon footprint and ensure that our food is the freshest it can be.
That’s why we choose to eat farm-to-table.
But before you invite your local farmer to dine with you, let us explain what farm-to-table means and how it is better for you, the producers, food establishments, and the environment.
what does farm-to-table mean?
While there are different interpretations of farm-to-table, otherwise known as farm-to-fork, the basic concept is that a food establishment has built a relationship with a (usually local) farm. In other words, rather than buying their produce from a supplier or distributor, restaurants buy directly from the producer.
how does food get from farm to table?
Sometimes this means that there is an arrangement whereby the farm delivers ingredients straight to the kitchen door. But more frequently, there are some additional steps along the supply chain. For example, many producers will sell their produce at farmers markets, where food establishments come to purchase their wares. This is particularly likely if you live in an urban setting or an area with a scarcity of fresh, local produce.
Eating farm-to-table has many benefits for the consumer, i.e. you. But did you know that it also supports local businesses and farmers? Here are 5 reasons why you should feel thrilled about eating farm-to-table:
1. ECONOMIC BENEFITS
When you choose to eat at a food establishment that follows a farm-to-table business model, you’re not only supporting that one local business, you’re also benefitting the local economy as a whole.
Farm-to-table cuts out the middle person; your money will go towards artisanal producers, local farmers and service providers, and will feed back into the local economy. You’ll be indirectly supporting other local businesses and leading to further employment opportunities in the area.
2. ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS
The longer the supply chain, the bigger the environmental impact. By eating farm-to-table, you’ll be consuming food with fewer food miles. Smaller distances equal less fuel and emissions.
3. FRESH INGREDIENTS AND FLAVOURS
To increase the likelihood that an ingredient is ripe by the time it reaches the consumer, imported fruit and vegetables are often picked before they are ready. Not only does this affect the nutritional value, but it also impacts the flavour.
At BReD, we take pride in the quality of our ingredients. By choosing to follow the farm-to-table model, our bakery ensures that our food is of the utmost calibre for our customers, both in terms of fresh taste and nourishment.
One of the best reasons to eat farm-to-table is the opportunity to eat speciality ingredients that are grown locally. The imported produce that always lines our supermarket shelves, no matter the season, can make us forget about the incredible ingredients that are grown and produced right here on our doorstep. From artisanal vegan cheese to stoneground flour, fermented sauerkraut, freshly brewed beer, and organic seasonal fruit and veg, we’re spoilt for choice in Whistler, BC!
5. ETHICALLY SOURCED
Buying farm-to-table makes it easier to find out where food has come from, so we can tell if it has been ethically sourced. This food model allows us to take more control of our purchasing power, holding local farms and businesses accountable by only buying from those that follow ethical practices, like organic non-GMO crops and vegan baking.
By buying from businesses that you believe in, you can help further their cause and encourage other local farmers and producers to adopt similar practices.
organic local farms in whistler, canada
At BReD, we are incredibly lucky to be surrounded by beautiful, fruitful countryside. We have regular farmers markets that showcase plenty of local organic farms and artisanal producers.
If you’d like to learn more about our own farm-to-table model, then check out some of the incredible local farms that we use for our vegan bakery: