Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - (Page 44)

Celebrating our bounty Locally grown fruits, veggies, meats and more abound in Georgia BY DEBORAH GEERING I magine the summertime feast of your dreams. Steak hot off the grill, fried chicken, pork chops. Butter beans and crowder peas, sliced fresh tomatoes and Vidalia onions, creamed corn right off the cob, green beans, okra. Hope you saved room for sliced watermelon, peach cobbler and blueberry pie. Here’s the best part: Every one of those foods is produced right here in Georgia. Locally grown food may be the hot, new trend in American cuisine, but it’s always been done this way in the Peach State. “Living in a small town and having a garden out the front door like we did, you didn’t have to make an effort to buy and cook local,” says Gena Knox, author of the new cookbook “Southern My Way” and a Reynolds native. “It’s not a trend like it is now. We didn’t know any other way.” Abundance and variety Lucky for Georgia cooks, our state is blessed with the geographic diversity and long growing season that allows for a cornucopia of options. Georgia produces everything from apples in the northwestern mountains to peanuts and world-famous Vidalia onions in the south to shrimp in its coastal waters. And let’s not forget the chicken. “If Georgia were its own country, we’d be the fifth largest poultry producer in the world,” notes Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black—a cattle farmer from Commerce. “And Georgia has really become a center for vegetable production, not just for our consumers but up the entire Eastern Sea Coast. Our climate and water 44 and transportation system, all that is really a perfect fit for Georgia’s vegetable production.” In recent years, many Georgia farmers have transitioned from growing commodities like soy and corn back to the old ways, opting to raise vegetables and fruits, like melons and tomatoes, instead. That switch has inspired some to compare our state to California, It’s Vidalia onion season! A Vidalia farmer shows onions says Beth Bland Oleson, di- from a Toombs County field. rector of education for the Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers food producers are raising the kind Association. But Georgia’s fruit and of food that they would—and do— vegetable production is better, be- feed to their own family. “People are beginning to connect cause a lot of it stays right here. the dots between food security and national security,” Black says. “They’ve seen that 75 percent of our energy is coming from somewhere else, and it’s coming from people who don’t like us very much, and they’re beginning to connect the dots that knowing where my food comes from—and that we have good strong “We’re able to offer a lot more families across the state producing to the local communities because the food—well, that’s good for my majority of our producers are family family.” farmers,” she says. “Even if they are a large family farm, they are literally Winning combinations Black doesn’t like to play favorrun by the whole family. It’s in the community, it’s built by the commu- ites among the vast array of Georgianity and it’s connected to the com- grown foods, but he does admit to a fondness for unusual combinations. “I munity.” In this day and age, those roots am a fan of innovation,” he says. “I’m represent more than just regional amazed how we’re taking some of the pride; they offer a practical advantage major commodities, like blueberries too. Food produced by Georgians for and pecans and peaches and Vidalia Georgians reduces transportation onions, and now we’re being entrecosts, saves fuel and ensures that the preneurial in thinking up these non- There’s no end to the variety of foods raised in our state. So what’s a cook to do? Use them all! More online at www.georgiamagazine.org COURTESY THE VIDALIA® ONION COMMITTEE GEORGIA MAGAZINE http://www.georgiamagazine.org

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia Magazine - May 2011

Georgia Magazine - May 2011
Contents
Viewpoint
Mailbox
Picture This?
Georgia News
Calendar
Currents
Georgia’s Energy Outlook
Special Energy Report
Dolphin Tales
Agrability in Georgia
Creature Comforts
Georgia@home
Around Georgia
My Georgia
Gardens
Georgia Cooks
Snapshot

Georgia Magazine - May 2011

Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Magazine - May 2011 (Page Cover1)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Magazine - May 2011 (Page Cover2)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Magazine - May 2011 (Page 3)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Contents (Page 4)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Viewpoint (Page 5)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Mailbox (Page 6)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Picture This? (Page 7)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia News (Page 8)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia News (Page 9)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Calendar (Page 10)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Calendar (Page 11)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Calendar (Page 12)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Calendar (Page 13)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Currents (Page 14)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Currents (Page 15)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia’s Energy Outlook (Page 16)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Special Energy Report (Page 17)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Dolphin Tales (Page 18)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Dolphin Tales (Page 19)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Dolphin Tales (Page 20)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Dolphin Tales (Page 21)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Agrability in Georgia (Page 22)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Agrability in Georgia (Page 23)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Agrability in Georgia (Page 24)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Agrability in Georgia (Page 25)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Agrability in Georgia (Page 26)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Agrability in Georgia (Page 27)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Creature Comforts (Page 28)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Creature Comforts (Page 29)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Creature Comforts (Page 30)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Creature Comforts (Page 31)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia@home (Page 32)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia@home (Page 33)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia@home (Page 34)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia@home (Page 35)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Around Georgia (Page 36)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Around Georgia (Page 37)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Around Georgia (Page 38)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Around Georgia (Page 39)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - My Georgia (Page 40)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - My Georgia (Page 41)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Gardens (Page 42)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Gardens (Page 43)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Cooks (Page 44)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Cooks (Page 45)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Cooks (Page 46)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Cooks (Page 47)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Cooks (Page 48)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Georgia Cooks (Page 49)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page 50)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page 50A)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page 50B)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page 50C)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page 50D)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page 50E)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page Cover3)
Georgia Magazine - May 2011 - Snapshot (Page Cover4)
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