‘farm to table’ fable_ tampa probe finds many restaurants lie about sourcing _ the salt _ npr

The Tampa Bay Times spent two months investigating where local eateries were really getting their ingredients. Perfect pork loin chops Many of their “farm to table” claims proved to be bogus.

The farm-to-table trend has exploded recently.

Cooking pork chops nz Across the country, menus proudly boast chicken raised by local farmers, pork from heritage breed pigs, vegetables grown from heirloom varieties. Baked pork chops and sauerkraut These restaurants are catering to diners who increasingly want to know where their food comes from — and that it is ethically, sustainably sourced.

Laura Reiley, the food critic for the Tampa Bay Times, wanted to find out. Roasted pork chops So she undertook a rigorous two-month investigation of Tampa’s farm-to-table restaurants, tracking down their sourcing claims. Recipes for pork chops Many of them turned out to be bogus.

I think that there’s a powerful incentive to tell a story. What goes with fried pork chops We all want that story — it’s a big part of why we go out to eat. Dishes with pork chops If a restaurant can give you that story about that pork chop that lived a happy and delightful life from the beginning to its very last minute, that’s great. Fried pork chops and gravy And sometimes they’re actually serving you commodity pork.

We did some DNA testing. Easy stuffed pork chops It’s always illuminating when you do that. Crock pot pork chops sauerkraut Unfortunately, it’s much easier to do that on seafood than it is on meat.

And there’s no way of testing if someone says these are organic, local heirloom tomatoes, and actually they’re Mexican tomatoes, irradiated. How to make smothered pork chops There are no genetic markers or tests that will tell you that.

What got me interested in this topic is I’ve done a lot of agriculture writing in the past couple of years in Florida, and met with a lot of farmers. Whats good with pork chops And they’ve all groused about this a little bit. Pork chops with That they’re used as billboards at these restaurants. How do i make pork chops in the oven A restaurant may buy from them once or twice and then phase them out but keep them on the chalkboard or on the menu.

You talked to one pork producer who walked you through the finances of raising a hog, slaughtering it for meat. Easy to make pork chops And the price of that pork chop on the plate would have been something like $40.

I think that we as Americans have really come to expect inexpensive food. Grilled pork chops pineapple We spend a very small amount of our disposable income on food, and restaurateurs have to cope with that. Preparing pork chops They have to figure out how to offer food to us at a price we will pay, while buying the best ingredients that they can. Fried pork chops no flour And often, as in any other business, it’s buy low and sell high.

There were plenty of people who were honestly surprised to find something was still on the chalkboard or still on their menu many months after they’d purchased that product, and many others that were just caught red-handed.

And I think it is a kind of arms escalation. Pan fried pork chops In some ways, it may go back to the fact that maybe 10 years ago, when we started getting real farmers markets, we as consumers started being able to buy great produce and great heritage meats and those kinds of things. Crock pot pork chops cream of mushroom So it’s almost like restaurants needed to up the ante and claim even more extravagant boutique products on their menus — things that we, as consumers, couldn’t buy ourselves. Best way to fix pork chops So I understand why some of these claims are being made.

So if I, as a consumer, want to dine out responsibly and want to support local agriculture without a huge carbon footprint — what should I do?

You’ve got to ask questions. Recipes using pork chops I mean, I don’t know how comfortable I’d feel at a restaurant asking to see their invoices. Crock pot pork chops with ranch But I think we’re going to have to move in that direction where … Pork chops quick there’s a little more consumer activism in terms of demanding more transparency in the provenance of where we’re getting our food.

When you see those claims on the menu — naturally raised, or heritage breeds — I think that they should raise a red flag, and you should feel free to ask more questions.

I think price point should definitely be an indicator — if it’s too good to be true, it probably isn’t true. Meal ideas with pork chops If you see that $10 lobster roll, something is fishy.

You’re pretty open in this article about the fact that you’ve written favorable restaurant reviews for some of these places that claimed farm-to-table philosophy and didn’t stick to it. Perfect baked pork chops Is this reporting in a way a mea culpa?

Absolutely. Crock pot pork chops recipe cream of mushroom soup I’m embarrassed. How do you cook pork chops Some of the places I’ve given the highest review in the past year and kind of swooned over their farm-to-table stuff — I feel duped.

If I went into it with the idea that I was paying a premium for a particular local food or a sustainably raised food and I got something else, it really doesn’t matter how it tasted.

One of the things that surprised me in this article is that a lot of the chefs who really do adhere to the farm-to-table ethos don’t wear it on their sleeves.

I think there’s a lot of farm-to-table fatigue among chefs. Smoked pork chops You know, it’s like the term foodie itself. How to make tender juicy pork chops It starts to take on a kind of bankrupt, yucky demeanor after so many people have misused it.