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February 23, 2011
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Amy Brown
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Edible Portland Honors Five Local Heroes of the Food Community

Two Thousand Readers Cast their Votes and Winners Revealed

PORTLAND, Ore. - February 23, 2011 Edible Portland, a magazine published quarterly by the non-profit Ecotrust that shares stories of Oregon farmers, fishers, chefs, and food businesses, recently honored five organizations with “Local Hero Awards.” More than 200 food boosters gathered at Ecotrust on February 17th to pay tribute to all twenty Local Hero Award nominees and congratulate the following winners: Your Backyard Farmer, Bamboo Sushi, Dave’s Killer Bread, Vincent Family Cranberries and Oregon Food Bank.

“To know that folks recognize our work is an amazing feeling; it’s also a celebration of all local cranberry farmers. That’s an important thing,” said Tim Vincent of Vincent Cranberries. “Not long ago, it seemed no one even knew that Oregon was such a perfect state for growing cranberries, and we hope that our family’s work to build a market for regional products will continue to gain attention so that other cranberry growers can reap the economic benefits.”

Edible Portland launched the Local Hero Awards program in 2009 to recognize and celebrate the community businesses and non-profits whose hard work and creativity enrich and contribute to the resilience of the regional food community. In the fall of 2010, Edible Portland asked its readers and Facebook fans to submit nominees for champions of Oregon’s local food movement in five categories: Farm, Restaurant, Food Artisan, Beverage Artisan, and Non-Profit. Four finalists for each category were selected by Edible Portland staff, who turned back to the community to determine the five winners. Approximately 2,000 people cast their votes. The complete list of nominees can be found online.

“Every nominee is a tremendous contributor to the health and flavor of our food culture,” said Deborah Kane, publisher of Edible Portland and vice president of Ecotrust’s Food and Farms program. “Oregon is a state rich with food and farm visionaries.”

About the Winners
Your Backyard Farmer: Since 2006, Donna Smith and Robyn Streeter have worked with homeowners to transform urban backyards into vegetable and fruit plots, paying weekly visits to the homes of each participant to plant, upkeep, and harvest fresh produce.

Bamboo Sushi: The first certified-sustainable sushi restaurant in the world, Bamboo Sushi serves seafood that is sourced from plentiful, healthy populations — all caught using environmentally ethical methods.

Dave’s Killer Bread: Dave’s whole grain and organic bread, which implores shoppers to “just say ‘No’ to bread on drugs,” has become a local favorite for its hearty, delicious flavor. Dave founded the company after serving more than seven years in prison; the company now supports projects that work to reduce prisoner recidivism.

Vincent Family Cranberries: This small, multi-generational family farm launched its independent line of cranberry juice and dried cranberries this June and has set itself apart with its farm-direct approach.

Oregon Food Bank: Through regional food banks, agencies, and programs, the Oregon Food Bank network distributes emergency food to approximately 240,000 hungry people each month, and also works to address hunger's root causes through public policy, outreach and education.

Ecotrust will continue to host the annual Local Hero Awards, seeking to honor heroes of the Northwest food community who may not often receive acknowledgement for their hard work and vision. In September 2011, Edible Portland will invite the community to submit nominees for the coming year’s Local Hero Awards.

About Edible Portland
Edible Portland is published four times a year by Ecotrust. The free publication, available at local farmers markets, grocery stores, restaurants, cooking schools and other locations throughout the region, addresses food and farm issues, and shares untold tales from the local food community. Advertising and subscription information is available at www.edibleportland.com. Learn more about Ecotrust at www.ecotrust.org.


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