You are what you eat – how locally sourced food sends the right message

More than 50% of people agree that what you eat says a lot about who you are (Eaters Digest Report 2016). As an event organizer or food service provider, what does your food say about you?

Diners everywhere are becoming increasingly aware that what they eat impacts their health, as well as the health of the planet. Locally sourced foods are replacing the preference for organic foods. Why? They deliver value to the local community. This desire for positive social impact, combined with the distrust of food that travels great lengths to get to our plates, is a recipe for the local, sustainable food movement (Eaters Digest Report 2016).

Rely on your suppliers to direct you to local sources

Local food experts can help you deliver the quality and thoughtfulness that sends the right message at your event. We asked Drew Munro to share his vision behind Drew’s Catering & Events. He knows exactly what his food says about him – and his clients are eating it up.

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Drew Munro, founder and Chef of Drew’s Catering & Events

Drew founded Drew’s Catering & Events in 2008. Since then, he has been applying an ingredient-first approach and has never lost sight of his passion for creating beautiful, unique meals for his clients.

Being a chef is Drew’s first priority. That means he takes a granular look at the quality, freshness, and local story behind the food he serves:

“We start with the ingredients. We find out what our local suppliers can offer that is fresh and seasonal; we bring that information into the conversation with our clients to marry their preferences with the high-quality local ingredients we are proud to serve.”   - Drew Munro

A good caterer will be able to provide information about where their food comes from. If you can get a high level of detail like the farmer’s name, region, or a story about the weather, you’re on the right path. Some of Drew’s favourite suppliers include the Benton Brothers for local cheese, and Deluxe Seafood for Ocean Wise certified seafood. These suppliers have their fingers on the pulse of their industries.

Your event guests crave a deeper connection to their food, and, with the help of a local food expert, you will be equipped to provide it.

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Cheese Platter by Drew’s Catering & Events featuring locally sourced cheeses from Benton Brothers

Creating value to support your locally sourced menu is all about communication. At Drew’s Catering & Events, client relationships are based on a two-way conversation.

“Some clients may want something out of season; our job is to guide them to a sustainable, flavourful option that satisfies what they are looking for.” – Drew Munro

This style of service builds trust and provides support to restaurateurs and event organizers looking to create a memorable experience.

The path to sustainable business is complicated. It requires a shift in thinking and a willingness to change. If you are going with local, line-caught fish for your chowder, make sure you are not serving it in a plastic-lined bowl.

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Chower and beer being served in compostable food ware at the Vancouver Aquarium’s Chowder Chow Down competition. Photo by Allison Kuhl Photography

“It’s all about education and consistency,” says Drew. “When you select the best local ingredients available and creative presentations to match, you have to think about your service all the way down to the food ware it’s presented on.”   

Drew made the decision years ago to remove all traditional plastic from their service offering. To launch that decision, he made a company-wide announcement and celebrated with a staff meal – now that’s staff engagement!

If you’re at one of Drew’s events and you’re looking for bottled water or juice, you will instead be offered a mobile beverage dispenser with compostable cups or real glassware. This is a proud talking point for the team at Drew’s Catering, and clients love it. Making the change to sustainable operations is not only the right thing to do for the planet, it helps you distinguish your business from the crowd. Remember, the transition requires support, so engage your stakeholders and ask experts like Drew to help.

Want to find out more about what Drew’s Catering & Events is up to? Check them out!

 

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