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The Root Cellar's interior
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A Root Cellar food box
By Stephanie Sidoti
Living in Missouri, you can take in the sights and smells of the state just by walking outside, but to experience the flavor of Missouri, you often have to go farther than your local grocery store.
Farmers’ markets have popped up all across the state, but knowing what to buy and how to prepare what you buy can be a real challenge. Many farmers’ markets have some ready-made products, but they mainly offer freshly harvested raw goods. Needless, to say the wide selection at any given farmers’ market can be daunting.
The Root Cellar in Columbia provides an option for people interested in eating locally but who may not know where to start. The grocery store offers a variety Missouri vegetables, fruits, meat, dairy, artisan foods, and local beer and wine. However, the food comes from farmers throughout Missouri and provides a wider geographic representation of Missouri than what may be available at local farmers’ markets. The store also goes a step further than many farmers’ markets and combines produce selections with recipes in the store and online.
In summer 2011, the Root Cellar began its food box subscription program. For $34.81 per week, the store will provide a box of food that you can pick up at its new distribution center in Jefferson City or at the Columbia location. The price is reasonable considering the amount and quality of food that the Root Cellar provides each week. Plus, the staff emails out recipes and cooking tips with each box.
There are three options for food box subscriptions, so people can tailor what is included to their personal preferences. The Bounty Box is made of just fruits and vegetables. The Barnyard Box supplies dairy and meat. And the Ploughman’s Box includes a variety of meat, dairy, and produce. The Ploughman’s Box is definitely the best variety for all of you omnivores. No matter what your dietary preference, having that box of food with recipes waiting each week April through October makes the task of eating locally so much easier.