Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Eat Better

The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Food Policy Coalition, an organization dedicated to creating a fair, healthy and sustainable local food system accessible to all area residents, has put together an easy to use 18 page guide to help people plan nutritious meals on a budget, stock their pantries, shop smarter, learn a few cooking basics, and utilize fresh produce. With short sections of text and lots of colorful graphics, the authors- a group of contributors from various educational and medical institutions, government offices and community service providers- deliver a lot of important facts in a very digestible format. There are tips about how to get the best deals at the grocery store, start a vegetable garden, an explanation of how CSA's work along with a list of 13 of them, and details about financial food assistance options.

Photo by Barney Taxel, Taxel Image Group
Well informed foodies and more experienced cooks will likely not find much that's new here. Though the countywide directory of farmers' markets, which includes locations, phone numbers, months of operation and hours is a keeper, to be pulled out in spring when they resume operation.  If you don't need this kind of information think of others who do. Maybe this is something you want to share with neighbors, workplace colleagues or employees. I also suggest passing it along to young adults you know- your own kids, relatives and friends- who are just beginning to live on their own: there's an entire page devoted to essential kitchen tools, divided into"buy now" and "buy later" categories. In fact, since we're in the gift giving season consider a package that includes the Guide along with a cast iron skillet,  a wooden cutting board, or a Dutch Oven.

The Community Food Guide can be downloaded as a pdf. Single printed copies for individuals or multiples for anyone interested in distributing them can be requested by emailing Nico Boyd,, or calling him at 216-429-8200, ext 212. A Spanish language version will be available in the next few weeks.

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