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Local food challenge back on the menu

Local food challenge back on the menu

Sunday 18 August 2019

Local food challenge back on the menu

Islanders are being challenged to spend the whole week only eating local produce from tomorrow.

The Jersey Local Food Challenge aims to educate people on how easy it is to make small changes to eat more sustainably and the health benefits that are derived from food with a lower carbon footprint.

22-year-old Bethan Watkins, who describes herself as having a passion for "sustainability, environmental awareness, and healthy living" decided to pose the challenge last year after spending time travelling in the Hawaiian Islands, where she believes there is a strong connection between the land and the people.

“I wanted to bring the challenge to Jersey to make others more aware of the journey their food has taken and how much better local produce can be for them and for the Island," she said.

This year, she is hoping to attract more participants by offering multiple ways to get involved, including swapping just a few items for local produce, rather than all. 

“From last year’s challenge I have recognised that for many, the change to buying all local produce can be daunting," Bethan explained.

Video: Bethan shares her tips for the Jersey Local Food Challenge.

"This event is all about forming healthy habits which will stick, which is why you can either swap just one food item to a local alternative, eat one fully local meal each day or eat fully local produce for the entire week.

"There is also the option to eat local organic produce as the environmental and health benefits of this shouldn’t be ignored.”

Bethan will also be helping people to search out the best places to buy their produce for the week by sharing a ‘hedge veg’ and farm shop map of the island and publishing a list of local food outlets who will be supporting the challenge by offering their customers a fully-local option for the week.

The week-long challenge will start with a community cookout between 18:00 and 20:00 on 19 August hosted by Bethan at the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society as part of their Cultivate Programme.

Pearl Cochrane, winner of Genuine Jersey’s ‘What’s on my Plate’ competition, will be cooking her Summer Soup made with all local ingredients while Christian Gott, Chef, Restaurant Manager and Writer, will be making a selection of seasonal canapés.

At the end of the week, sustainable supermarket Scoop will be hosting "a day of fun, food and music" to raise awareness of the benefits of buying more from local producers and outlets.

Pictured top: Bethan Watkins, who came up with the challenge idea. (John Liot)

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