Sacramento’s third Farm-​to-​Fork cel­e­bra­tion will open in less dra­matic fash­ion than the pre­vi­ous two.

The event, which cul­mi­nates Sept. 27 with the (sold-​out) Tower Bridge Din­ner, will kick off at 5 a.m. Wednes­day with a fresh-​food drive on Capi­tol Mall. Con­tri­bu­tions will go to Sacra­mento Food Bank & Fam­ily Ser­vices, which will dis­trib­ute food and serve as a clear­ing­house for other food banks in the region.

Local gro­cers Raley’s and Nugget, pro­duce sup­plier Gen­eral Pro­duce, Cal­i­for­nia Endive Farms and the Cal­i­for­nia Pear Advi­sory Board will donate pro­duce to the event. Dona­tions of fresh, local pro­duce from the pub­lic also are welcome.

The goal is to col­lect at least 25,000 pounds of fresh food and set a Guin­ness World Record. A Guin­ness rep­re­sen­ta­tive will be on hand at the food drive, which lasts until 11 a.m.

World record bid aside, this kick­off event likely will pro­vide less spec­ta­cle than the inau­gural Farm-​to-​Fork celebration’s cat­tle drive and the sec­ond year’s trac­tor parade – both of which tra­versed the Tower Bridge. But it’s still an out­size dis­play of Sacramento’s farm-​to-​fork bona fides, said Mike Testa of the Sacra­mento Con­ven­tion & Vis­i­tors Bureau.

“The first year, we wanted to show that farm-​to-​fork was not just pro­duce, but pro­teins,” Testa said. “The sec­ond year was to show the equip­ment that was nec­es­sary for farm to fork. This year, it is to show the bounty of every­thing that is com­ing out of the ground, and to ben­e­fit peo­ple in need – with fresh food and not the tra­di­tional canned goods that peo­ple think of when they think of food donations.”
There are few other places in the coun­try “that could com­pete for a (fresh-​food) world record in a 24-​hour period,” Testa said. “And if they did, they likely would be sourc­ing (some of it) from the Sacra­mento region.”

Sacra­mento Mayor Kevin John­son declared Sacra­mento “America’s farm-​to-​fork cap­i­tal” in 2012. The city’s first Farm-​to-​Fork cel­e­bra­tion, in Sep­tem­ber 2013, lasted a week. This year’s cel­e­bra­tion runs 2 12 weeks and includes the free Farm-​to-​Fork Fes­ti­val Sept. 26 on Capi­tol Mall.

Sacra­mento Bee

America’s Farm to Fork Cap­i­tal, Sacra­mento, CA