Local Food Festival

​​​​​​Celebrating local food in our community​

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​​The Office of Sustain​ability and Innovations and Argus Farm Stop are ​excited to announce the second annual Ann Arbor Local Food Festival, an event to celebrate and enjoy the abundance of this year’s harvest from local farms. This event will sho​​wcase the many restaurants, chefs, and others in the Ann Arbor area who prioritize local ingredients at their businesses. It will also offer opportunities for community members to hear the stories of those who produce their food – our local farmers and the organizations focused on elevating those farmers and their products.  

Join us at the Festival to purchase a meal or snack featuring local ingredients from a variety of vendors in attendance, shop local farm stalls, sit down to eat and enjoy live music from Ain't Dead Yet, and connect with others in the community. Plus, enter a prize drawing to win a cookbook - or play the "Compost Toss" for a chance to win prizes! This is a family-friendly event with fun activities for all ages. The Local Food Fest is free to attend, with food and beverages available for purch​ase from local vendors.


What: Ann Arb​​​or Local F​ood Festival  

Location: Ann Arbor Farmers Market (315 Detroit St.)

Time: Thursday September 14th, 5PM to 8PM

​Featuring music from​​ Ain't Dead Yet 

​Local Food's Imp​act and Benefits​​

There are many reasons t​​o buy locally grown food, including:

  • produce.jpg​Local produce is often of better quality and lasts longer than produce shipped from further away. Oftentimes the produce you purchase at a farmers market was pick​ed the day before, rather than spending days en route to th​e store, and additional time on the shelf. Local really makes a difference in freshness!

  • ​​Local farms are often smaller in size and have growing practices that are gentler on the planet. Many of the farms in Washtenaw County use organic practices, regenerative soil practices, and little to no harmful chemicals. ​

  • Buying local builds the economy and puts money directly into the hands of the farmers who grew it. Conventional grocery stores take the majority of the profits, often leaving 15% or less to go to the producer. Consignment store models often give 70% or more to the farmer, and buying directly from the farmer gets 100% of the profits back into their hands. 

  • Buying local supports increased food security for our community. The pandemic revealed the risk of having large supply chains. Investing in the local food system helps to increase food security for our community now and in the future. ​​​

​Opportunities to Donate and Support Local Food​

There are opportunities to donate an​d volunteer with many organizations p​ursuing a more equitable and sovereign food system right here in Washtenaw County and ​in Michigan at large, including: 

  • Fair Food Network​: An organization that works to increase access to healthy foods by supporting programs, like double up food bucks, that help to make food more affordable to families facing food insecurity. ​

  • We The People Oppor​​tunity Farm: Has a mission to break the cycle of incarceration in Washtenaw County by investing in the employment and development of formerly incarcerated people through farming and community engagement.

  • Growi​ng Hope: Their goal is to grow an equitable and sustainable local food system where all people are empowered to grow, sell, buy, prepare, and eat nourishing food in Ypsilant​i.

  • Washtenaw County Black Farmers Fund: Aims to build a more equitable food system by investing in Black farmers. ​​

  • Project Grow Community GardensProvides residents with community garden space to grow, and resources on how to grow your own food. 

  • Slow Food Huron Valley: A non-profit working to strengthen our region’s food system, build community food security, and preserve the cultural value of food. ​​

  • Food Gatherers: ​A food bank and food rescue program in Washtenaw County.

  • National Young Fa​rmers: An advocacy group committed to supporting the next generation of farmers having equitable access to land. The Michigan chapter is based out of Grand Rapids. 

  • Michigan Good Food Fund: Provides funding to many start-up and small farms or food ventures across the state of Michigan. ​

Purchasing produce directly from farmers at a Farmers Market, purchasing a weekly produce subscription or CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) from a farmer, or visiting the farm directly to purchase your food are the best ways to directly support local farmers and put money back into our local food economy.  Shopping at a farm stop or food hub like Argus Farm Stop, where farmers get 70% of the profit on produce sold, is also a great way to support local farmers year round.

​​Food Insecurity In Ann Arb​or and Washtenaw County

​1 in 10 people in Washtenaw County are food insecure. That means that there are people in our neighborhoods who lack reliable, consistent access to affordable and nutritious foods. The City of Ann Arbor and many organizations in the county are working to increase food access and affordability. This can be accomplished in part by having a more robust local food system. 

If you find yourself or your famil​y in need of food assistance, Food Gatherers has a list of food pantries and banks in the area, as well as times to access them. Go to the Food Gatherers website for more information on how to fi​nd free food resources. 

​2023 Event Vendors and Particip​ants

Food and Drink Ve​​​ndors:

  • Craveable Food Trailer

  • Datelicious

  • Harvest Kitchen

  • It Kicks

  • Marupo's Egg Tarts

  • Mindo Chocolate Makers

  • MoliRolli​​​

  • Nirits Gluten-Free Bakery

  • Ritespice

  • Tasty Bakery

  • The Coffee Grind Coffee Truck

  • The Treat Truck​

  • Vegan​​o Italiano

  • Why Not Pie

Farm Stands and CSAs:​​

  • ​​​Bracy Gold Bison​ Ranch​

  • Madison's Closet and Farm​

  • Slow Farm

  • The Hungry Locavore

  • Vestergaard Farms​

​Other Vendors and Organizatio​ns:

  • Ann Arbor Senior Center

  • Argus Farm Stop​​

  • Fair Food Network

  • ​Food Gatherers

  • People's Food Co-op​

  • VegMichigan

  • VogueBooge Candles​​​

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