Inna Jam: Eating Local in the Bay Area

It’s no secret that the local food movement is huge in Berkeley. Alice Waters’ flagship restaurant, Chez Panisse, is located in our Gourmet Ghetto, and is flanked by stellar restaurants touting local, sustainably farmed ingredients.  Our grocery stores – like Berkeley Bowl and Monterray Market – look like a cross between a traditional grocery store, and the best stocked farmer’s market you’ve ever seen.

And of course, a lot of Berkeley residents buy into DIY culture, taking those beautiful locally grown fruits and veg and canning those ingredients themselves.

But if you don’t fancy yourself quite that crunchy, eating local can still go beyond signing up for a CSA or making the weekly pilgrimage to the farmers markets. Packaged goods that show up on the shelves are beginning to pop up, and even be available like a CSA to your house.

When I first moved to Berkeley I spent a lot of time trying to decide which CSA’s I’d join. We signed up for Farm Fresh to You, for fruit and veggies, Marin Sun Farms, for eggs and meat, and most surprisingly, to Inna Jam, for jams!

Inna Jam founder Dafna Kory makes all of her jam herself, cans it, and then transports it by bicycle around the Bay Area. One taste of her Pluot jam, and we were hooked. We had a year-long subscription of twelve jars for twelve months to Inna Jam and devoured it all with insatiable gusto. So when Dafna decided she needed to scale her business by building a commercial kitchen for her jam, I was all over the idea of trading some Kickstarter funding for some of her fabulous product.

In Berkeley, we don’t kid around about our local food, but I also know that it’s becoming the trend across the world.

I’ve shown you mine – now you show me yours! How do you eat local in your cities?

2 comments

  1. Natasia says:

    Your location recommendations are fantastic. I had hodo soy tofu my last trip back and crave it even now. Cannot wait to try Inna’s products – the minimal packaging design is simply gorgeous!

  2. Jeno says:

    I agree with Natasia, the packaging is wonderful. A lof of Europeans I’ve met have this stereotype of Americans surviving on coke and hamburgers alone. I try to explain that the US is a huge place and it’s impossible to generalize people especially when it comes to food – such a sensitive entity. When I tell people about the interest and growth of local products they’re always surprised and impressed. I would love to go to Berkeley to check out the local food scene! Is Chez Panise as pristine and amazing as I imagine?

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