Fourteen Wisconsin-based groups are listed in the annual Good Food Org Guide announced this week.
The guide includes these Wisconsin-based groups: Hunger Task Force, Wellspring, Wisconsin Local Food Network, Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association, Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems, REAP Food Group, Central Rivers Farmshed, Community GroundWorks, FairShare CSA Coalition, FRESH Food Connection, Wisconsin Food Hub Cooperative, Madison Waste Watchers, Michael Fields Agricultural Institute and Milwaukee Urban Gardens.
The James Beard Foundation (www.jamesbeard.org) and Food Tank (www.foodtank.com), along with an advisory group of more than 70 food system experts, developed the third annual Good Food Org Guide, which features 1,000 food-related organizations across the United States.
This guide highlights organizations that are “doing exceptional and dedicated work” in the areas of food and agriculture, nutrition and health, hunger and obesity and food justice.
The guide, expanded for 2016, incorporates new initiatives from across the nation and will be released at the seventh annual James Beard Food Conference in New York City Oct. 17-18.
”Working in collaboration with the James Beard Foundation, we are proud to bring the total number of listed organizations to the 1,000 mark. It is a testament to the tremendous amount of growth and support we have seen in the ‘good food’ sector,” said Danielle Nierenberg, president of Food Tank.
She said the vision and objective of the annual publication is to focus attention on the organizations “that work every day in fields, kitchens, classrooms, laboratories, businesses, town halls and Congress to create a better food system.”
Susan Ungaro, president of the James Beard Foundation, said, ”The Good Food Org Guide continues to serve as a useful tool for individuals looking for opportunities to improve their local food system. The guide’s user-friendly design makes it the go-to resource for identifying nearby organizations doing good work in the areas of food justice, hunger, and agriculture.
Experts, including past recipients of the James Beard Foundation Leadership Award and food and agriculture leaders, collaborated to generate the list.
Here’s a closer look at the Wisconsin institutions, as described by the creators of the guide:
Hunger Task Force
The Hunger Task Force, based in Milwaukee, operates a food bank that provides healthy and nutritious food free of charge to a local network of food pantries, soup kitchens and homeless shelters, as well as a 200-plus acre farm that grows fruits and vegetables for the express purpose of feeding the hungry.
In addition, a dietitian educator teaches a nutrition education curriculum to children in local elementary schools. Kids learn about nutrition, healthy eating and how to make healthy recipes. During the growing season, these kids make regular field trips to The Farm where they get to work in our school garden and demonstration kitchen, and get hands-on experience.
Wellspring is a nonprofit education and retreat center and organic farm whose mission is to inspire and teach people to grow, prepare and eat healthy food. In so doing, Wellspring hopes to transform food systems and build community. Programs in wellness education, ecology and gardening, the arts and personal growth have been offered to the public since 1982. The group offers a variety of cooking classes and workshops on horticulture and permaculture. It also operates a Farm to School program in addition to their Summer Farm Camp.
Wisconsin Local Food Network
The Wisconsin Local Food Network is a collection of individuals and organizations that all share a common vision for Wisconsin: a state that offers communities and businesses a local food system that supports sustainable farms of all sizes, a strong infrastructure for those farms and supporting food business to thrive, and affordable access to healthy locally grown food for all Wisconsin residents.
Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association
Established in 1948, the Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association is one of the oldest organizations to be included in our guide.
Wisconsin is the third largest potato producing state in the country and this coalition of 140 farmers aims to educate Wisconsinites on their practices, research more sustainable growing methods, and create a social network of farmers where information can flow easily.
The group also operates the “spudmoblie,” a mobile potato farm that travels around the state educating children on the art of growing potatoes.
Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems
The Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems is a research center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. The outreach and training programs are helping farmers, educators, crop consultants, businesses, and eaters put these research nonprofit land trust committed to the acquisition and preservation of land in Milwaukee.
Through partnering with neighborhood residents, communities cultivate healthy, locally sustained gardens and improve the quality of life in Milwaukee.
REAP Food Group
REAP Food Group wants to see locally produced food on every plate in Southern Wisconsin. The organization has also produced a Farm Fresh Atlas that maps the food organizations, organic restaurants and farmers’ markets in the region. REAP’s Farm to School program partners with the Madison Metropolitan School District to offer fresh, healthy food at school. The program includes classroom education, local food procurement for school meals and a snack program that serves a fresh, locally grown fruit or vegetable to over 5,000 low-income students every week.
Central Rivers Farmshed
Perhaps the first “farmshed” in the country, Central Rivers defines the term simply as a network of people, businesses, organizations and productive lands that create a local food economy. Similar in concept to a foodshed, the farmshed idea helps envision and strengthen a community’s relationship with regional landscape. Farmshed organizes events, resources and partnerships to support a local food economy by providing opportunities for participation, education, cooperation and action to support a local food economy in Central Wisconsin.
Since 2001, Community GroundWorks has managed Troy Gardens, 26 acres of public protected farmland, prairie and woodlands in Madison. Hands-on educational programs for children and adults, in gardening, urban agriculture, nutrition and environmental protection, allow Community GroundWorks to realize a goal of connecting people with nature and food.
FairShare CSA Coalition
The FairShare CSA Coalition, based in Madison makes CSAs more accessible by linking consumers to local farmers through outreach, education, community building and resource sharing. Annual FairShare CSA Coalition events includes the FairShare CSA Open House, a free event where attendees can learn more about CSA products and meet local farmers. The coalition also organizes two annual fundraising bike tours called Bike the Barns and Bike the Barns West, which work highlight local farms and food.
FRESH Food Connection
FRESH Food Connection is a group of farms in southern Wisconsin sustainably producing vegetables, fruit, meat, eggs, cheeses, canned goods, wool and other farm commodities. As farmers seeking to produce in harmony with nature and with the least environmental impact, they sign onto a sustainability pledge that enumerates the principles they follow and adhere their practices to those sustainable standards.
Wisconsin Food Hub Cooperative
The Wisconsin Food Hub Cooperative is a farmer-led cooperative owned by the producers and the Wisconsin Farmers Union. They are dedicated to securing the most profitable markets for producer-members. The hub makes it easy for the retail, institutional, and foodservice sectors to buy locally. The organization helps local farmers by providing them with the opportunity, through marketing, sales, aggregation and logistics, to access wholesale markets they could not access easily before.
Madison Waste Watchers
Madison Waste Watchers is a Madison initiative dedicated to waste reduction in the city. The program provides recycling and composting education to communities to help reduce the amount of waste produced. The organization has been busy all through 2015, hosting a number of local food events and offering internships for youths to learn more about sustainable farming.
Michael Fields Agricultural Institute
The Michael Fields Agricultural Institute promotes the ecological, social and economic resiliency of food and farming systems through programs like their Crop and Soil Research program, which uses classic plant breeding and modern screening methods to produce plants that perform highly and can be used in organic systems. In addition, the Public Policy program engages grassroots support for sustainable agriculture while helping farmers and others take full advantage of sustainable agriculture programs.
Milwaukee Urban Gardens
Milwaukee Urban Gardens, a program of Groundwork Milwaukee, is a mobile potato farm that travels around the state educating children on the art of growing potatoes.
Anyone with a hankering for hash of snails or powdered duck or a host of other centuries-old British cookery should be plenty pleased with this year’s James Beard Foundation cookbook of the year.
But for the rest of us — by which I mean, virtually every last one of us — the selection of Heston Blumenthal’s “Historic Heston,” a $200, 431-page epic exploration of mostly antiquated recipes, will be a head-scratcher. It’s one of those books so fabulously out of touch with any cook who doesn’t have an army of sous chefs at his side, one has to ask for whom this book was written.
Actually, the answer is obvious. It was written by and for Blumenthal, a talented writer and brilliant chef with a host of restaurants in England. And in that regard, it is a masterpiece. Blumenthal has a knack for ferreting out the genealogy of a dish, a skill he’s put to fascinating use in previous books, including his 2006 “In Search of Perfection.”
But the selection of his latest tome as cookbook of the year — announced Friday evening during a ceremony in New York — is puzzling. Blumenthal takes recipes already made obtuse by history (salmagundy, anyone?), and instead of translating them into terms contemporary readers could appreciate or at least learn from, he filters them through an equally inaccessible lens of modernist (think whiz-bang science-driven cooking) techniques.
What’s more, the book got two awards, also beating out David Kinch’s “Manresa: An Edible Reflection” and Rene Redzepi’s “Rene Redzepi: A Work in Progress” in the cooking from a professional point of view category.
Of greater interest to most home cooks will be the foundation’s naming of Diana Kennedy to its Cookbook Hall of Fame. Kennedy has spent much of her life learning and preserving the traditional cooking and ingredients of Mexico, a mission that sends her across the country in search of elusive recipes.
Her first cookbook, “The Cuisines of Mexico,” was written based on research with home cooks across Mexico and established her as the foremost authority on the cuisine. It remains the seminal work on the subject.
The Beard Foundation’s awards honor those who follow in the footsteps of Beard, considered the dean of American cooking when he died in 1985.
Some familiar faces nabbed broadcast awards: Martha Stewart was honored for her public television series “Martha Stewart’s Cooking School” in the studio-based television category, while Anthony Bourdain took the top honor for on-location television for “The Mind of a Chef,” also on public television. Outstanding food personality or host went to Food Network’s Ina Garten for her “
“Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics.”
The big winner in the journalism awards was David Chang’s Lucky Peach, a quarterly launched in 2011 that quickly became one of the top food magazines. Though the magazine itself wasn’t honored Friday, its writers netted awards in five different categories — umor, food and culture writing, personal essay, profile and the MFK Fisher Distinguished Writing Award.
The winners of the coveted James Beard Foundation national chef awards for 2013 include the Blue Hill Restaurant in New York City for Outstanding Restaurant. Tied for Outstanding Chef were David Chang of Momofuku Noodle Bar in New York City and Paul Kahan of Blackbird in Chicago.
The Best New Restaurant is State Bird Provisions in San Francisco and the award for Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional went to Merry Edwards of Merry Edwards Winery in Sebastopol, Calif.
Other national winners include:
• Outstanding Wine Program, Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder, Colo.
• Outstanding Bar Program, The Aviary in Chicago.
• Outstanding Service, Del Posto in New York City.
• Outstanding Pastry Chef, Brooks Headley of Del Posto in New York City.
• Outstanding Restaurateur, Maguy Le Coze of Le Bernardin in New York City.
• Rising Star Chef of the Year, Danny Bowien of Mission Chinese Food in San Francisco and New York City.
In the regional categories…
• Great Lakes, Stephanie Izard of Girl & the Goat in Chicago.
• Mid-Atlantic, Johnny Monis of Komi in Washington, D.C.
• Midwest, Colby Garrelts of Bluestem in Kansas City, Mo.
• New York City, Wylie Dufresne of wd-50.
• Northeast, Melissa Kelly of Primo in Rockland, Maine
• Northwest, Gabriel Rucker of Le Pigeon in Portland, Ore.
• South, Tory McPhail of Commander’s Palace in New Orleans.
• Southeast, Joseph Lenn of The Barn at Blackberry Farm in Walland, Tenn.
• Southwest, Jennifer Jasinski of Rioja in Denver.
• West, Christopher Kostow of The Restaurant at Meadowood in St. Helena, Calif.
• James Beard Foundation America’s Classics: C.F. Folks in Washington, D.C., Frank Fat’s in Sacramento, Calif.; Keens Steakhouse in New York City; Kramarczuk’s in Minneapolis;Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack in Nashville
• James Beard Foundation Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America Inductees: Eric Asimov, author and journalist, New York City; Dorothy Kalins, editor, New York City; Barbara Lynch, chef and restaurateur, Boston; Zarela Martinez, chef and restaurateur, New York City; Michael Mina, chef and restaurateur, San Francisco; Bill Yosses, author and pastry chef, Washington, D.C.;
• James Beard Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award: Cecilia Chiang, chef and restaurateur, San Francisco.
• James Beard Foundation Humanitarian of the Year: Emeril Lagasse, Emeril Lagasse Foundation, New Orleans.
No trendy restaurants. No fancy equipment. No hard-to-find hipster ingredients.
The pages of this year’s top food publication don’t read like your average gourmet glossy. That’s because the only trend ChopChop magazine – named publication of the year by the James Beard Foundation – cares about is how to get America’s children eating healthier.
Billed as the “fun cooking magazine for families,” ChopChop was launched in 2010 by cookbook author Sally Sampson to give parents and kids the tools to fight childhood obesity. Though the magazine is available by subscription, one of its primary methods of distribution is by pediatricians giving copies to their patients.
The foundation’s awards honor those who follow in the footsteps of Beard, considered the dean of American cooking when he died in 1985. The ceremony was held in New York, where the Beard Foundation is based. The ceremony honored winners in media and publishing.
Earlier this year, tough talking television chef Anthony Bourdain made news for his jump to CNN. But on May 3, he was honored for his work on public television. His “The Mind of a Chef” was named best on-location television program. Meanwhile, Andrew Zimmern of Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Foods America” was named outstanding host.
The cookbook of the year honor went to Maricel E. Presilla’s massive ode to the food of Latin America, “Gran Cocina Latina.” The 912-page book covers a tremendous swath of cuisines and cultures, explaining the common threads that run through the region’s many foodways.
Prolific cookbook author Anne Willan was named to the foundation’s Cookbook Hall of Fame. Willan has written extensively on the foods of France, including the cookbook “The Country Cooking of France,” which won two Beard awards in 2008. In 1975, she founded the Ecole de Cuisine La Varenne cooking school in Paris.
In the blogging world, the group food blog award went to DarkRye.com, the edgy web magazine of grocer Whole Foods Market. The site focuses on the blending of food, health, sustainability, design, tech and social enterprise. The individual blogger award went to Hank Shaw’s “Hunter. Angler. Gardener. Cook.” The site follows Shaw’s effort to hunt, gather and cook much of his own food.
The winners of the 2013 James Beard Foundation book, broadcast and journalism awards are:
• Cookbook of the Year
“Gran Cocina Latina: The Food of Latin America” by Maricel E. Presilla
• Cookbook Hall of Fame
• American Cooking
“Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking” by Nathalie Dupree and Cynthia Graubart
• Baking and Dessert
“Flour Water Salt Yeast: The Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza” by Ken Forkish
“Wine Grapes: A Complete Guide to 1,368 Vine Varieties, Including Their Origins and Flavours” by Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding and Jose Vouillamoz
• Cooking from a Professional Point of View
“Toque! Creators of a New Quebec Gastronomy” by Normand Laprise
• Focus on Health
“Cooking Light The New Way to Cook Light _ Fresh Food & Bold Flavors for Today’s Home Cook” by Scott Mowbray and Ann Taylor Pittman
• General Cooking
“Canal House Cooks Every Day” by Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer
“Jerusalem: A Cookbook” by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi
“What Katie Ate: Recipes and Other Bits & Pieces” by Katie Quinn Davies
• Reference and Scholarship
“The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from Around the World” by Sandor Ellix Katz
• Single Subject
“Ripe: A Cook in the Orchard” by Nigel Slater
• Vegetable Focused and Vegetarian
“Roots: The Definitive Compendium with More Than 225 Recipes” by Diane Morgan
• Writing and Literature
“Yes, Chef: A Memoir” by Marcus Samuelsson
BROADCAST AND NEW MEDIA AWARDS
• Radio Show/Audio Webcast
“Fear of Frying”
Host: Nina Barrett
Producer: Lynette Kalsnes
• Special/Documentary (Television or Video Webcast)
Producer: Roger Sherman
• Television Program, In Studio or Fixed Location
“CBS Sunday Morning: Eat, Drink and Be Merry”
Host: Charles Osgood
Producers: Gavin Boyle, Amol Mhatre, Rand Morrison, Amy Rosner, Jason Sacca and Robin Sanders
• Television Program, On Location
“The Mind of a Chef”
Host: Anthony Bourdain
Producers: Anthony Bourdain, Joe Caterini, Alexandra Chaden, Jonathan Cianfrani, Christopher Collins, Peter Meehan, Michael Steed and Lydia Tenaglia
• Television Segment
“Friday Arts, Art of Food”
Network: WHYY TV
Producer: Monica Rogozinski
• Video Webcast, Fixed Location and/or Instructional
“How to Cocktail”
Producers: Kit Codik, Scott Kritz and Noah Rothbaum
• Video Webcast, On Location
“The Perennial Plate: Real Food World Tour”
Hosts: Daniel Klein and Mirra Fine
Producers: Daniel Klein and Mirra Fine
• Outstanding Personality/Host
Host: Andrew Zimmern
Show: “Bizarre Foods America”
Network: Travel Channel
• Publication of the Year Award
• Cooking, Recipes or Instruction
Matt Goulding, Matthew Kadey with Tamar Adler and Paul Kita
“The Butcher Is Back!,” “The Six-Pack Foods of Summer,” “Southern Food Rises Again”
• Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award
“Bangkok Pop, No Fetishes,” “The Sweet Taste of Success,” “Enter the Comfort Zone at 606 R&D”
• Food and Culture
Ann Taylor Pittman
“Mississippi Chinese Lady Goes Home to Korea”
• Food and Travel
Travel + Leisure
“The Best Little Eating Town in Europe”
• Food Coverage in a General-Interest Publication
• Food Politics, Policy and the Environment
The American Prospect with the Food & Environment Reporting Network
“As Common As Dirt”
• Food-related Columns
The Obsessivore: “I’m Big On Japan,” “Everyone’s a Critic,” “The Tradition Starts Here”
• Group Food Blog
• Health and Well-being
Rachael Moeller Gorman
“Solving the Sugar Puzzle”
“The Cheap Bastard’s Ultimate Guide to Eating like a Total Cheap Bastard in Dallas”
• Individual Food Blog
Hunter Angler Gardener Cook
• MFK Fisher Distinguished Writing Award
“Chicken of the Trees”
• Personal Essay
“Danny and the Electric Kung Pao Pastrami Test”
• Visual Storytelling
Michele Outland and Fiorella Valdesolo
“Starters,” “Dessert,” “Smoke & Ash”
• Wine, Spirits and other Beverages
“A Vintage Crime”
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