Last Sunday Jesse, a few wondrous Food Hosts (Emily, Alissa, Tina & Charmaine) and myself braved the heat and crowds at the 2012 Sustainable Living Festival to educate ‘eaters’ about food box schemes and how they can play an important part in addressing our food security and sustainability issues by better supporting ‘growers.’

We got an amazing reception at the Mystery Box Challenge, where “making a meal of sustainable surprises” was the order of the day. Chef Sandie Hernandez added a generous serving of his own inspiration to cook three beautiful dishes with the contents of our donated food basket.

As the clouds parted and people got stuck into their lunches, Costas Georgiadis (ABC celebrity gardener, in case you don’t know him) spoke passionately – in his bearded wisdom – about the Supermarket price wars and how the massive power imbalance in the trade of fresh produce in Australia is hurting farmers. He advanced an argument for revering our food producers more than we do celebrities.

He even got Jesse talking to everyone at The World’s Biggest Organic Feast long table about why we do what we do. After that plug we were bombarded with questions about “how the scheme works?”

It is really difficult to convey all the ways in which buying from CERES Fair Food benefits the community and the environment in 20 seconds flat. But our volunteers did an amazing job, speaking from experience, giving their own reasons for joining the Fair Food Movement.

I’d like to thank those who came to visit us at our stall on the banks of the Yarra. And our attendant Food Hosts for generously giving their Sunday to take an enthusiastic crowd through the reasons why they also volunteer their premises once a week.

Food Hosts are a group of dedicated change agents ensuring our members can connect with like-minded people, enact the values of environmentally responsible consumption, support farming families and socially excluded workers, while conveniently accessing affordable, fresh and fair organic produce.

It’s a tall order but I think we’re doing a fab job working together.

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