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Article about Farm-to-Fork Farm Dinner Fiasco

While I only know what I read in the article, it seems rather outrageous to me. What do you think?

"When an over-zealous regulator shows up at a farm dinner demanding that food be destroyed as hungry guests await, who do you call? Here's Laura's account written as a letter to her guests who had come to Quail Hollow Farm expecting a meal of foods harvested from local small family farms."

http://farmtoconsumer.org/quail-hollo...

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    1. Brava to to her. Great story.

      jb

      1. I can't imagine something like this happening. I'm glad the evening was rescued, but..... damn!

        1. Is it terribly cynical for me to think that ultimately a local agribusiness producer or chain restaurateur must be behind this "raid"?

          2 Replies
          1. re: guilty

            Sounds like the long arm of Monsanto or ADM to me.... yuck.

            1. re: ChefJune

              Why should a big corporation in Delaware or Illinois care about what a small farm on the outskirts of Las Vegas is doing? Why not just attribute this incident to an over zealous inspector (or supervisor) in a state government office?

          2. On the one hand..ridiculous what they went through. On the other hand, why didn't they have their permits in order? It doesn't matter how much wholesome love you put into the food, it still has to be prepared, stored, and served according to local regulations, and you need to follow certain rules when you take money from people in exchange for food. Just because you love your local farm doesn't mean the rules don't apply to them. Was there nothing that could have been done ahead of time to prevent this?

            5 Replies
            1. re: babette feasts

              Reread the attached article. They had done all of that!

              1. re: ChefJune

                Sorry, I had only skimmed it. My mistake.

              2. re: babette feasts

                Seems to me that the inspector didn't care that they had permits and had jumped through all those hoops. She was just hell-bent on ruining someone's evening

                1. re: babette feasts

                  Permit requirements can vary depending on whether you are doing a public or private event even if you're charging money. If everyone is invited and it's not open to the walk up public and is being held on provate property it may not have required any permits and could have been deemed a private event. It sounds like they thought they were doing a Private event and the Health dept disagreed. Would be interesting to know why.

                  I have been investigating these regulations for a planned pop-up restaurant and the rules go beyond just making sure the food you serve won't make people sick. If you want to serve alcohol you have to have a license that can cost thousands of dollars. I discovered that if you make it a charitable event the hoops are less numerous and much less costly.

                  jb

                  1. re: JuniorBalloon

                    Actually, after I read the article, I wasn't exactly clear about exactly who the guests were. At various times the author says they were guests at a private party, but then later says that one solution was to let them join the farm friends program (or whatever that was) as members, making their presence "legitimate", which made NO sense to me since if they were friends, then there'd be no need for permits and so on. I found that part of the article really unclear. What I gathered from it is that this was not a friends invitation only party. This was some sort of event that was small, tickets or entrance or some sort of fee was paid, and the owner tried to pass this off as a small dinner party for invited interested people, or something like that.
                    I suspect this must have been the case, because inspectors don't show up for private dinner parties, even if tipped off by local meat/produce "cartels". There must have been a stranger/financial component that was being passed off as something different, and raised enough of a profile in the community for inspectors to become interested. I personally don't think there was a conspiracy behind it, and I suspect that the poor food inspector was just doing her job in a difficult situation. I suspect the author was kind of inflammatory towards the inspector and this interaction made the evening difficult -- after all, why would you ask if you could feed the pigs with the food? Just wait til they go, then feed the pigs! Odd...whole thing came off as odd, and to me, seemed to be written from a political standpoint (aka virtuous angelic farm food producer is done wrong by evil representatives of "the Man"). I'd love to hear the other side of the story, to make a more informed opinion. After all, I am as we all are, just speculating. And, as in the case of situations like this, the truth lies somewheres in the middle.