Posted by: cherylyoung | January 17, 2013

Day 33 Devour B.C At Feast of Fields

Day 33 Devour B.C At Feast of Fields

Devour B.C At Feast of Fields

By Brian Payton

I am sampling the scallop tartare and chenin blanc

when I hear the first wave of laughter.

 

We are gathered in the sun drenched fields of

UBC Farm on Vancouver’s west side, surrounded

by orchards and hemlock forest, enjoying some of

the finest food and wine in British Columbia.

 

Then, all at once, hundreds of heads are tilting

skyward.

 

I look up and there it is- a small plane towing a

large ad for Subway sandwich chain.

 

the pilot actually circles a few times befor flying

away, leaving us to savout the irony.

On a summer afternoon each year, Feast of Fields

brings together come of B.C’s best chefs, farmers,

brewers, vintners and food producers to showcase

their offerings to the public.

 

The “wandering picnic harvest festival” is the principal

  fundraiser for FarmFolk/city Folk, a non-profit

organization working to connect urbanites with

the people who grow their food.

 

Armed with wine glasses and linen napkins, 1,000

feasters stroll UBC Farm between tents displaying

inspired and beautifully presented cuisine.

 many have come with a strategy.

 

some make beelines for their favourite retaurateurs

– chefs representing restaurants for Aquaa Riva to

Zzin – while others methodically work their way

from one end of the field to the other.

 

the rest of us wander happily amid the countless

canapes, sampling everything from Barnston Island

Basil and Fraser Valley duck to Kitsilando heirloom

tomatoes.

 

Okanagan Vaalley goat cheese, and queen Charlotte

Island Halibut: in short, the full culinary abundance

of British Columbia

 

Recent movements such as the 100-Mile Diet

(launched by B.C writers J.B MacKinnon and Alisa

Smith have made us aware that the farther food travels

from farm to plate, the higher the greenhouse emissions,

and the fewer the jobs for local cummunities.

 

Local food is also envariably fresher, more flavourful,

and nutritious.

 

It helps to preserve agricultural land and llifestyles,

  too-part of our heritage as British Columbians.

 

Back in 1947, 97% of the food we consumed was

grown and produced within the province, according

to B.C’s Get Local business alliance.

 

Today it’s 40 to 50 %. Still there are about 20,000

farms in B.C providing at least 36,000 direct

agricultural jobs and more than 280,000 jobs t

hroughout the entire food system.

 

Considered together, agriculture , fisheries, and

food production is a $17 billion slice of the provincial

economy.

 

Feast of Fields is a chance to meet some of the poeple

working hard to grow, catch, ferment and brew

the best of B.C

 

After loading up with a selection of desserts, I sit

down in the middle of the field to soak up

the ambiance.

 

The satisfied city fold wandering past aren’t just

sophisticated foodies- there are young families

and college students, too.

 

We’ve all come together to try something new,

to get back to basics, to taste something fresh

and authentic.

 

It feels like a day of thanksgiving- a day to celebrate

who and where we are.

 

There are Feast of Fields events in three locations

 each year,in farm country on the Lower mainland,

Vancouver Island and in the Okanagan.

 

Contact the FarmFold/City Fold Society for tickets

and information

Info(www.farmfolkcityfolk.ca ww.bcculinarytourism.com

www.edible-britishcolumbia.com www.100milediet.org

www.getlocalbc.org

sea

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