The Corpus Callosum

Eat Locally

really like the idea behind the Farmer’s Diner.  This guy,
Tod Murphy, started a restaurant that only servers food that was grown
or produced within seventy miles.


an interview with him in .  The idea is
simple.  Reduce the dependence on fossil fuel by getting all
products locally.  

The ramifications are interesting.  

It helps support local farming businesses, which then are able to
compete with operations.

Farmers Diner has also spun off a nonprofit arm that will train farmers
to be restaurant suppliers and assemble farm networks to supply other
Farmers Diners…

…It’s very different from the traditional model where you
would try to put up forty units and create an increased valuation for
the company and then take it public and everybody internally makes a
lot of money because you’ve created all this
“book” value by trading on the stock exchange.

Our real interest would be to have lots of people wanting to do a
franchise where they are…

Murphy is hoping to catalyze the development of more restaurants that
follow a similar model.  I suspect that not every area has the
diversity of resources, within 70 miles, that it would take to support
a restaurant.  If the menu is too limited, people are not
going to want to come.

But there is nothing sacred about the seventy mile radius.
 Some places might need a bigger radius.  Some places
might say that 90% of their items are locally sourced.  But
the idea would be the same.


  1. #1 Greg P
    June 29, 2007

    We have something similar in Kentucky, to some extent with restaurants, a greater extent with produce markets, but the two are connected, of course.

    My guess is that if you analyzed this from various points-of-view, it’s more hype than anything. Even more so in Michigan, there are times in the year when local produce just isn’t available.
    One attached benefit here is trying to get those who previously raised tobacco to learn how to grow other things, so any help at finding a market for their product is good all around.

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