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Farm-based dinners go to the heart of flower farmers’ work

We recently launched the 2017 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour, a series of flower farm-based dinners that give attendees an exclusive opportunity to experience life on an American flower farm and to learn why Certified American Grown Flowers matter.

Now in its third year, the dinner tour is annually presented by Certified American Grown Flowers, a unified and diverse coalition of U.S. flower farmers, including small and large farms located in multiple states around the country. The event crisscrosses the country, stopping at some of the most beautiful flower farms in America. Guests tour each destination farm, hear from the farmer, meet a talented floral designer, and enjoy a four-course gourmet meal paired with great American wine and micro-brewed beer, all while experiencing the beauty of American Grown Flowers at the center of the table.

FIELD-TO-VASE-A map of the 2017 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour. The three-season tour spans the U.S. in seven locations and showcases the work of American flower farmers.But that’s just the technical description. Less obvious is what the dinner tour means and the opportunities it provides.

Bringing a couple hundred people to a flower farm is eye-opening for every audience involved. Hardworking flower farmers get to share their stories and let their efforts speak for them as visitors literally sit among their work in flower fields, greenhouses or underneath a canopy of shade-grown ferns. Floral designers have the opportunity to share their talents, wowing guests with displays that show off the beauty and variety of local flowers. Chefs preparing farm-to-fork meals help diners make the connection to the flower industry’s version of that approach — Field to Vase. And the guests arrive as your average consumer, or flower aficionado, or our floral industry friends, but they leave as devotees to locally and sustainably grown flowers.

The origin of the flowers at the center of our tables, given as gifts and used at life’s celebrations, matters. Supporting America’s floriculture history is important. Choosing flowers grown by an American flower farmer has an impact — on the farmer’s family and employees, on the economy, and on you and yours.

Field to vase is not just a saying — it’s a movement. The prior two seasons of the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour hit a nerve not only with consumers, but also with local and national media. The coverage has been amazing and has brought attention to the American Grown Flower movement and the work of America’s flower farmers.

Kasey Cronquist is the administrator of Certified American Grown Flowers. He can be contacted at Kasey@americangrownflowers.org.