The NOLA Locavores, a local foods advocacy group that strives to inspire New Orleanians to take advantage of the rich local food realm of the city, is especially excited for their 2013 Eat Local Challenge. This better-than-ever event kicks off June 1st and entails
registrants committing to eating only food grown, caught, or raised within 200 miles of New Orleans for the entire month of June. The $25 registration fee gets you a Locavore tote bag, an invitation to the ELC kickoff party on May 31st and a local foods expo on June 8th, a 10% discount at Hollygrove Market and Farm, a 10% discount of locally sourced meats at Cleaver and Co., and a Locavore t-shirt to wear proudly as you support the vibrant Louisiana food culture.
The Locavores are also hosting a foraging scavenger hunt with a $1000 cash prize and have created a mobile phone app so that information about what foods to buy when and where, local recipes, and farmers markets updates is always right at your fingertips. Registrants are encouraged to utilize community gardens, roadside stands, U-Pick farms, grocery store local food sections, and the many restaurants that have Locavore-approved options on their menus created specifically for the challenge. Adherence to the rules relies on the honor system, and there are four levels of strictness to choose from: the Ultra Ultra Lenient Level for those who may only be able to participate for a few June days here and there, the lenient Ignatius O’Reilly Level with 6 non-local “vice” food products (think coffee, chocolate, imported cheeses, etc.) allowed any time and six “off the wagon” meals per week, the strict Bienville Level, with three non-local vices and 3 off the wagon meals, and for the truly courageous, the Ultrastrict, 100% local food level.
The Locavores believe in the benefits of eating locally for many reasons, including a higher retention of nutritional value, less environmental damage, support of the local economy and farmers, more humane treatment of local animals, and decreased reliance on pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics. Last year’s Eat Local Challenge estimates showed that if every registrant spent $50 on groceries per week, $110,000 was redirected to our local farmers, fisherman, shrimpers, and their retailers. The Eat Local Challenge is good for you, good for Louisiana, and good for positive change!
For more information and registration, please visit the Locavore website at http://nolalocavore.org. Also friend the Eat Local Challenge on Facebook and follow on Twitter at @elcnola.