The Whole Hog recipe book © Images Courtesy of Ontario Pork
There’s nothing like empty grocery counters to bring the importance of Ontario’s food supply chain into sharp focus.
With memories of pandemic-driven food shortages still fresh, a group representing Ontario farmers began reaching out to people across the supply chain to strengthen connections between various points in the supply chain.
Two simple questions kicked off a year-long conversation focused on food grown close to home and the care that goes into getting it to Ontario dinner tables: What do you wish people knew about pork grown in Ontario? What’s your favourite way to enjoy pork?
For 12 months, those two questions were posed to farmers, veterinarians, nutritionists, truck drivers, factory workers, butchers, retailers, chefs and Instagram grillers from one end of the pork supply chain to the other.
From those conversations, Ontario Pork curated The Whole Hog, 200 pages of family stories, recipes and tips, tapping into surging consumer interest in nose-to-tail local food and reinforcing the end-to-end quality, commitment, versatility and value of local pork.
“It really reminded us that we’re all in this together,” said Stacey Ash of Ontario Pork. “More than just farmers, behind every order of ribs, every holiday ham, bacon sandwich or pork chop dinner is a team of people who care deeply about raising healthy animals and preparing amazing food.”
Proceeds from the book sales will be donated to the Feed Ontario network of food banks, building on a 10-year partnership between the two organizations. With an online price of $39.99, including HST, the book can be purchased at shop.ontariopork.on.ca and is available for sale at select retail partners.
The book includes interviews with and recipes from leading Ontario chefs, including well-known television personality Chef Emily Richards, Chef Michael Hunter of Antler Restaurant, Chef Eva Chin of Avling, cookbook author Chef Michael Olson, and Chef Chris Zielinski of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment.
“What I loved was that contributors used pork in a way that I had never used before and I think that people who pick up the cookbook are going to see that and want to try different cuts, different flavours,” Richards said.
Featured chefs share the spotlight with farmers, vets, truckers, butchers, grillers and more—and in some cases, they can connect directly with the farmers and butchers providing the meat they prepare and serve. The connections provide insight into the care given to animals and the sustainable practices being used by farmers.
Oxford County pork producer TJ Murray said, “I believe all farmers are on the same page, when it comes to protecting our animals, our land and our water. As much as the book is a series of recipes, I hope it provides much-needed education to what goes into our farms and your food.”
If you ate today, thank a farmer… and a vet…and a nutritionist… and a truck driver…and a butcher… and a grocery store worker…and a chef… and anyone who shows their commitment day after day to get healthy, safe, delicious food from farm to fork in Ontario.
Celebrating Local Food Week
June 5-11, 2023
Quality food comes from a committed and caring supply chain.
This Local Food Week, Ontario Pork says ‘Thank You!’ to every link in the supply chain that delivers trusted, delicious food to Ontario families.
Learn more about the people behind high-quality pork grown close to home by ordering your copy of The Whole Hog: Recipes for those who love local food and yearn for everyday sustainability. Proceeds to the Feed Ontario network of food banks.
The Ontario-raised pork we enjoy is the result of collaboration between a community of local food professionals, from farmers to transporters, packers, and retailers to chefs that elevate our plates and remind us all of the importance of food quality & knowing where our food comes from.