We headed East from Lawrence to the University of Missouri at Kansas City, UMKC as it is called. 

Andy's brother Dave joined us, who along with his partner Travis, generously hosted us in Lawrence. We got there about a half hour early, and had a good conversation with a couple of kind folks who arrived early and are enthusiastic about the food movement in KC. 

The perfect fall weather may have diverted more folks from attending than we expected, as about 40 people gathered to watch the documentary on Sunday night. 

In the conversation following, there was a lot of good energy. Alex Pope of the Local Pig talked about the difficulty of finding USDA inspected slaughterhouses, a big challenge for farmers and butcher shops trying to get animals harvested and sold directly to customers. 

Chef Michael Beard of Mass 715 in Lawrence, where we actually ate an incredible lunch earlier in the day, talked about the commitment of both time and money to local farms. Each week he'll devote half a day going to farmers markets and meat lockers, to make the burgeoning local system work for the pioneering restaurant. 

Audience listening. (Photo A. Trimbach)

Tom Parker, who raises pastured pork, talked about the challenges he faces with regulations from the USDA. How it took him years of trying to finally get approval to process chickens on his farm. He has an exemption to harvest, package and sell up to 20,000 birds per year. A fact that helps to keep their family farm profitable. 


Farmer Tom Parker. (Photo A. Trimbach)

Brooke Salvaggio of Badseed talked about the challenge of marketing their products, when they have to work so hard to grow the vegetables and raise the animals on the farm as well.  She also provided tangible resources for some people interested in finding the best deals for local food. Deals like her CSA, and also the contacts found through the KC Food Circle.

Post reception with incredible charcuterie from The Local Pig. (Photo A. Trimbach)

Following the screening, almost everyone in the audience walked over together to a reception area where the Alex and the good folks from the Local Pig were kind enough to provide charcuterie raised by the Parkers. It was really really tasty wrapped in pretzel bread, and the conversations about improving local distribution, and local agriculture were inspiring to be a part of. 

The good stuff. Pretzeled bread and charcuterie from the Local Pig. (Photo A. Trimbach)

As the hour grew late, we thanked everyone, including Caitlin Horsman, the professor who set it all up, and headed back West

Do you like this post?

Showing 1 reaction

published this page in Ruminations 2012-10-16 00:39:25 -0400