Ali Berlow – Island Grown Initiatives & Edible VineyardThu 05 Apr 2012
Story by Food Revolution Team
Ali Berlow is editor and owner of Edible Vineyard magazine and founder and former executive director of Island Grown Initiative - a non-profit dedicated to supporting local farmers and raising awareness about the importance of local food for health, environment, economies and community. Ali’s work all stems from wanting to feed her family good, clean and fair food.
Ali is, in her own words, “just a housewife”. Yet over the last six years, she has created something remarkable on Martha’s Vineyard, involving the local community in food education, sustainable growing and improving the farm-to-plate supply chain to enable people to eat local foods.
Island Grown Schools
Ali launched Island Grown Schools (IGS) with Noli Taylor in '07 by building school gardens and supporting cafeterias and classrooms with good clean food and agriculture education. Island Grown Schools also teaches children to become wise eaters with knowledge about where good healthy food comes.
From the very beginning IGI was opened up to all members of the community: parents, teachers, students, administration, farmers, chefs, school staff, nurses, cafeteria directors, public health officials, principals. Everyone has an opinion about school lunch, and Island Grown Schools provided the chance for them to do something about it.
In 2007, IGI launched its poultry program by building and supporting a humane mobile poultry processing trailer - that provides clean, safe, fair wage, accessible, affordable, size-appropriate, permitted, on-farm humane slaughter and processing of poultry.
The implementation of a gleaning program in 2009 has since rescued literally tons of pounds of fresh produce from local farms and distributed it as donations to local school cafeterias.
Ali blogs on Huffington Post about the intersections of food, community and spirituality. Her first book about humane mobile slaughterhouse for poultry, published by Storey Publishing will be released in spring, 2013. Find her on Twitter: @AliBerlow
Find out more about Ali and her great work on Martha’s Vineyard here.
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