Help Open The Freshfully Cafe


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Read my review of Freshfully at: http://geekalabama.com/2012/05/03/business-review-freshfully/

The Freshfully retail location at the Avondale area of Birmingham is getting close to its one year anniversary.  The owners of Freshfully Sam Brasseale and Jen Barnett; offers the best local produce and products from Alabama.  Freshfully also now offers classes at its retail location and yes, it still offers the weekly boxes containing local produce.  Freshfully now wants to take that local and fresh produce and open the Freshfully Cafe.

Freshfully’s mission is to make more local food more accessible to more people. One way to do this is to make it ready to eat. Freshfully wants to keep spreading the word about delicious local fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy. They also want to give you more reasons to come hang out at Freshfully and all over Avondale.  So this is why they are wanting to open the Freshfully Cafe.  All of the items at the café would come from local ingredients just like what you see at the retail store and in the boxes.  Freshfully is running a Indiegogo fundraiser to raise funding to start the café.  If you also have certain items you can donate, they will take that too!  They need a panini press, toaster, microwave, blender, espresso machine, ice machine, meat slicer, tables, and a sandwich prep station.  You can say Freshfully Cafe is going to be like a local sandwich shop, only better!

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Some of the perks are great as well!  For a pledge of $25, you will get one pound of fresh and local strawberries, lemons, peaches, or a pint of figs.  For a pledge of $50, you will get one Belle Chevre goat cheese kit plus one ticket to their class on how to make goat cheese, starring Sam Brasseale.  For a pledge of $100, you will get 10 cups of Finder Grind Coffee, and for a pledge of $500, they will name a sandwich after you!  Feeling generous, if you pledge $1000, Freshfully will treat you to a private, after hours farm-to-table dinner for six at Freshfully!

If you want to donate any money, you have until midnight on Saturday March 9th to do it!  Go to http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/freshfully-cafe to donate!

To learn more about Freshfully go to: http://freshfully.com/

Admit It; We’re Too Big


I think most of you has now heard of this new plan from New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg.  You know this plan has stirred some feathers with the Big Gulp fans.

The newest plan that might take effect next year would limit the size of all sugary drinks in restaurants, movie theaters, food carts, and cafes.  The drink size limit would be 16oz.  And this rule would only affect places that get a letter grade from the health department.  Supermarkets and grocery stores would not be affected.  So why do I think this law will not help in the battle of the bulge?  Watch this video below and see the reactions from some New Yorkers.

If you are eating at a restaurant and you know they offer free refills.  There is going to be a huge line at the drink counter.  Plus if you get your food to go; a little 16oz drink is not going to satisfy me or anyone else.  And for movie theaters; they are not going to be affected.  Since diet drinks is not part of this rule they will now offer many more diet drinks that you can get in any size.  They might even just do away with the regular drinks.  Plus all of the food carts might only offer diet drinks as well.  So this plan is stupid and is not going to work.

Don’t get me wrong; New York City has done a few good things for people who like to be in good health.  One; all restaurants have to post the calorie count on their menu boards.  For someone like me who is trying to get in shape that is a good thing.  Also they have made it harder for smokers to smoke in public places.  I had to suffer from a parent who loved to smoke often in the car with only the window slightly cracked.  All of that nasty second-hand smoke was horrible to breathe in.  And I do not want to smell it from others who likes to smoke.

I also like seeing what the city is doing in schools to get kids to be healthier.  One; all soft drinks, sports drinks, and unhealthy foods have been banned from being sold.  And two; there is a movement for school lunches to be healthier with fresh fruits and veggies and salad bars.  Plus if I had kids I would not like seeing them eating chicken nuggets made from strange chicken parts or eating pink slime burgers.  Sounds appetizing doesn’t?  I would also like to see more recess and gym classes in schools so kids can stay active during school.  Not this keep them in the classroom so we can teach them to the test nightmare.  By the way here is a video about the effects of sugar on your body.

I also want to talk about the folks who say “the government needs to stay out of our lives” or “we need to quit being a nanny state.”  I applaud what the government is doing to get us healthier.  Obesity is costing us taxpayers billions of dollars each year and if nothing is done to stop this trend it might bankrupt the entire health care system.  And if that happens we are screwed!  Unfortunately seeing the huge number of people being too big is getting worse and worse.  And it shows that some of these people have no control and needs some help.

Now a lot of this is not their faults.  Many foods in the supermarket are loaded with calories and high fructose corn syrup.  And if you have a big family and are poor.  Which are you most likely to grab?  A pack of cookies for $1 or fresh fruit for $3?  I wish the government would force all big restaurant chains to post calorie counts on their menus.  And also require the food manufacturers to quit adding all of this extra sugar and calories to their foods.  I would also like to see a new farm bill which would subside family farming, fresh fruits and vegetables, and sustainable farming that would deliver to local farmer markets.  Instead of this factory farming, fast food farming, and corn syrup farming.

We need to move to new ways of growing crops and selling produce where you support local farms and buy local goods.  Instead of buying your stuff that was trucked in from California.  That is why I love the Freshfully model.  And once I find a job (unemployed 11 months now) I would love to support them.  Sure this does cost more; but the government needs to transform the food stamp program so you buy better foods instead of the junk some people buy now.  It’s very hard to buy healthy food for a large family if you are poor.

I’m not suggesting banning certain foods or limiting what you can buy because of your weight.  But some things needs to be done now to stop the exploding obesity crisis.  Yes the government needs to step in and help.  But also the people needs to learn self-control and personal responsibility.  Where is Richard Simmons when you need him?

Business Review: Freshfully


On Wednesday before the Digital City movie event I went to visit Freshfully.  This new business in the Avondale area of Birmingham features local produce and products.  Freshfully won the Occupy Avondale contest and has six months of free rent.

Freshfully started as a online-only business and wanted to be in a physical location inside the Birmingham metro.  Freshfully features organic and substantial produce from local farmers that have a relationship with the owners of Freshfully.  The business also sells weekly boxes containing produce, milk, and diary that can be picked up anywhere in the Birmingham metro.

The owners of Freshfully Sam Brasseale and Jen Barnett “love it” that they are getting six months of free rent.  The company is working on a limited budget and only has four employees.  The company wants to keep things “as local as we can.”  And everything featured in Freshfully comes within an 350 mile radius of Birmingham.  The store has many products made by local people that you will not find in a major grocery store.  And the owners love all of the media and blogger attention that Freshfully is getting.

One of the things I liked about Freshfully is that each product on the shelves describes the product and the good things about it.  Plus they tell you who made the product and where it came from.  So you know it’s from local sources and not shipped in from another part of the country.  The owners are hoping that Freshfully expands statewide and offers local products to all Alabamians.  Freshfully is located on 200 41st St S in Birmingham (directly across from Avondale Brewing Company).  The web address is http://freshfully.com/. Their phone number is 205-983-6456.  And their hours are Mon.-Sun. from 10am to 7pm.  From May 3-5 Freshfully is holding a grand opening celebration with live music, live cooking demonstrations, meet and greet with local farmers, and many other special things!

And the owners of Freshfully will be on Oh! Brother Radio Thursday May 3rd at 7pm on Birmingham Mountain Radio.  Podcast of the show will also be available.  Congratulations to the owners of Freshfully and here’s a toast to great success!

P.S. bring your own bags or you will have to buy a $3 reusable bag!

Great Day for Freshfully


http://blog.al.com/businessnews/2012/03/freshfully_wins_occupy_avondal.html

http://magiccitypost.com/2012/03/29/occupy-avondale-gets-freshfully-with-free-rent/

The company out of the Birmingham Metro called Freshfully won the Occupy Avondale contest.  The company now gets rent free company space for six months!  Freshfully is a new start up company that aims to connect farmers with the consumers that are wanting fresh food.  This is something Alabama really needs in the battle of the bulge!

Here is an statement from Jen Barnett Freshfully CEO.  “We will be opening a market in May 2012 filled with all local foods,including fresh produce, Alabama meats, pantry staples, and more! The 125-year-old building was once home to Hill’s Food Store, and we’re so excited to turn it back into a neighborhood grocery.”

Please do check out Freshfully at http://freshfully.com/ and like them on Facebook and Twitter.  This is a great start for Freshfully and hopefully they will expand to the rest of Alabama.  Because people really needs fresh food in Alabama!