Slow Food




Growing, Cooking and Eating Local Food

Local Food – why it matters and what you can do for our Centennial Celebration

By Sandy Heng, Vice President Ann Arbor MI Branch

On many a dark morning I carried a lunch bag and water jug on the way to earn a day’s wages.   I know the indignity of squatting down in the fields amidst the toads and dirt clods to relieve myself, the itchy rash caused by sweat-drenched shirt sleeves brushing against vegetation, and the bliss of shade under a canopy of brilliant gold corn tassels.

Gritty and glorious at once, life on the land, raising life from the land, is hard.

The notion of food quality and security is changing from the days of my young adulthood of picking strawberries, cutting velvetleaf from soybeans and walking miles of fertile farm fields. As we look toward our future as an organization, it is instructive to fully understand how we came to be here so we may chart a course to tomorrow.

My parents and their generation survived the depression and the food rationing of the war.  Feeding people, maximizing production, making it affordable; they dedicated their lives to making sure they did not allow hunger to knock on their back door again.  They brought us lettuce in the winter and made good on the slogan ‘a chicken in every pot.’  They invented irrigation systems to water the lettuce and planted acres of corn to feed the chickens. (Continued) Click ‘Magazine’ on the menu button to see the rest of Sandy’s comments and her lovely photo of heirloom tomatoes.