State News
3:40 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Greater Peoria Food Summit explores sustainable supply

Government, non-profit and education leaders are hoping to boost Central Illinois’ access to local, sustainable food.  The different groups are participating in the Seeds-2-Success Greater Peoria food summit Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Peoria RiverPlex.  Mary Ardapple helped organize the event.  She says the goal is to help find ways to give growers and consumers the land and marketing to produce local foods:

 “That doesn’t mean it’s all out in an open acreage out in rural Peoria or Tazewell County. That could very conceivably be hydroponics, vertical greenhouses, community gardens that actually are an economic fiber of that neighborhood. It could be conservation and sustainable practices in a new housing development,” Ardapple says.

 Other challenges to creating local food supplies include inadequate farmer training and not enough space at farmer’s markets to hold the crops.  Leaders from a sustainable food program in Minneapolis are also speaking at the summit to share their tips on ways to keep food local.