Farm to table, also known as farm to fork, can be defined as a social movement where restaurants source their ingredients from local farms. Farm-to-table is a phrase that can mean different things to different people. At its heart, farm-to-table means that the food on the table came directly from our farm, without going through a store, market, or distributor along the way, the food is picked at peak freshness and is bursting with flavors and vitamins. Because the produce is usually very flavorful, we don’t dress our food up with complex sauces and overpowering flavors, instead we prefer to let the freshness and flavor of the food speak for itself.
In its purest, most honest form, farm-to-table means the table is actually at the farm and cooks or chefs prepare and serve the food at the farm (even in the field), as in Outstanding In the Field events. These are often special meals or fundraisers planned as one-off events. Often a tour of the farm is offered, with the farmer showing and describing the methods used to raise the meat, poultry, fruits, and vegetables. As such, these are educational meals as well as featuring foods that are as local and seasonal as you can find.
The farm to table movement has had a huge impact on the foodservice industry and how restaurants source and prepare their food. Here are some of the main benefits of farm to fork: