Lander initiative makes locally sourced, healthy foods accessible to the community – Wyoming News Now

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LANDER, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) – Wyoming is an agriculturally rich state. Yet, finding fresh, locally sourced foods can be difficult for people living in more rural areas. One group in Fremont County is working to put these products on people’s dinner plates.

Meadowlark Cafe is part of the Wind River Slow Food project, a Lander based non-profit. Slow Food is a national organization on a mission to provide folks with food that’s good for them, and good for the planet. The Wind River chapter is implementing that mission in Fremont County.

At the cafe, you’ll find fresh fruits and veggies, grains, kombucha, and everything in between, all of which are locally grown and produced.

Not only does the Wind River Slow Food project make fresh, healthy foods available to folks living in the area, but it also helps producers get their products from the farm, to the table.

Instead of having to rely on summertime farmer’s markets, producers have an option to sell their products year round at Meadowlark Cafe. Anna Smedts says that it’s a win-win situation for both producers and consumers.

She explains, “There are a ton of benefits to buying local food, to know where your food comes from, the story of the farmer and the family that produced it, to recognize the heritage of what we grow here…. There’s also nutritional benefits, environmental benefits, we’re not overhandling the food between the factories, the truckers, and the ships to bring food here.”

Buying local can sometimes be a bit more expensive than other foods. However, when you buy local, you keep your dollars in the community, helping boost the local economy.

Smedts says, “There will be a change in how we eat and we think about food. It might look like the cost up front, but in terms of health, in terms of keeping that money locally, in terms of cutting out the middleman, we think that’s value worth adding to your plate.

Meadowlark Cafe has been holding pop-ups for the last several weeks ahead of the store’s opening. On March 1, its doors will open to the public.

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