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Presentation covers local food options

Angela Bukur | Thursday, April 25, 2013

As a part of Food Week 2013 at Saint Mary’s College, two representatives from Purple Porch Co-op and Prairie Winds Farm spoke about healthy, sustainable and local food options available to South Bend residents.

Dan Hicks, a member of the Purple Porch Co-op board of directors, said “local is everywhere” when it comes to food options. Representatives from Purple Porch co-op as well as Charlotte Wolfe from Prairie Winds Farm presented their healthy, sustainable food options available to local residents in the South Bend area.

“Being a part of a local community even for a short amount of time, being an informed and inquisitive consumer and seeking out local businesses to support can be some ways college students can eat locally,” Hicks said.   

Hicks said the Purple Porch co-op is a member-owed cooperative enterprise in South Bend, connecting people in the Michiana area with local growers who produce organic food.

“It helps to create a transfer of food from producer to consumer [that is] more of a face-to-face transfer instead of just economic,” Hicks said.

Hicks said the co-op is designed as a farmer’s market where producers set up their table and sells their locally grown food. Currently, he said there are 24 local producers who sell their food every Wednesday evening from five to seven at their location on High Street in South Bend.

Charlotte Wolfe, the owner of Prairie Winds Farm, said her company’s farm is an educational farm in Lakeville, Ind., that aims to grow their own food and offer local residents the chance to see the sources of their food.

“Our aim is to explore alternatives to show kids that farming is beneficial to our community,” Wolfe said.  

She said the farm uses a step-by-step approach to engage children in a variety of practical farming and gardening skills. The farm recently partnered with Bertrand Farm, Inc., to provide internships to students interested in working on the farm to educate children about farming and where their food comes from.
Stefanie Schwab, president of the Food Sustainability Committee at Saint Mary’s, said it’s all about the “real food.”

“Advocating for real food and educating students about food issues and where our food is coming from is important,” Schwab said.

Schwab said students interested in becoming part of the Food Sustainability Committee should contact her at sschwa01@saintmarys.edu to help plan Food Week 2014.

Contact Angela Bukur at abukur01@saintmarys.edu