By Nate Smelle, Bancroft This Week
Is there anything more important than food when it comes to sustaining one’s health and well-being? Some might point to the fact that the human body can live longer without food than it can without water—which is true—however, take away just one of these components in this life-giving equation for more than 24 hours and the body will begin to tremble and shake as its energy reserves begin to deplete rapidly.
For the third year in a row, community members gathered to celebrate and honour the women, men and children who dedicate their lives to growing and supplying the people of North Hastings with this vital nourishment.
On Saturday, Nov. 1, a crowd of farmers, gardeners and foodies came out to show their support for one another, and to raise awareness of the important role that small-scale food growers and producers play in creating a healthy and secure local food system.
The Real World Food Prize was first handed out in North Hastings in 2013by local permaculturist and Real Food Hero in her own right, Laurie Ann Storring. The award was created by world-renowned food activist Dr. Vandana Shiva, and is intended to recognize individuals and/or organizations for their outstanding work towards facilitating community integration, education and celebration around the production of grassroots urban food production, guerrilla gardening and permaculture projects.
With more than 70 per cent of the world’s food comings from small farms and gardens, Storring believes it is crucial that we recognize the Real Food Heroes building the local foundation of a healthy and secure food system. Storring believes that a food system without corporate control, GMOs, toxic chemicals and patented seeds is a food system that honours the soil, water air and earth that gives every living thing its life-sustaining energy.
Storring has been instrumental in building the sustainable food movement here in North Hastings and beyond, according to two of this year’s winners, Ramona Tremblay and Jim Thomson. The husband and wife team have owned the Craftsman restaurant near Bancroft for more than 28 years. The Craftsman's motto speaks for itself ìReal Food for Real People. In that time they have strived to make the food they sell more sustainable every year.