We’re partnering this summer with local frame building legend Steve Rex (www.rexcycles.com) and our favorite neighborhood bike shop Whitworth Cycles for the Create In Cal Bike Club. Members get a custom jersey, organized rides to local breweries, farms, wineries, and other local makers-of-things, such as cheese and olive oil, and a pre-party at HOT ITALIAN. Stop in to HOT ITALIAN, Rex Cycles, or Whitworth Cycles and pick up a reg form, first ride is July 24!
Our first order of business with Create In California is to design a logo that will illustrate the initiative to the public. Instead of us trying to create one, we thought it would be best to go straight to the experts, so we’re asking you to participate in the process by voting on designs and/or submitting your own work of art. The call-out is open to California-based applicants, either professionals, students, or just design-enthusiasts. The winning logo artist will receive fame and fortune, ok, well maybe just fame. Deadline for submittal (JPEG, TIFF) is June 1, 2011.
Create In California is a initiative established by HOT ITALIAN founders Andrea Lepore and Fabrizio Cercatore who wanted to promote the many great California-based businesses and individuals making quality products in our State.
Through HOT ITALIAN, we’re introduced to, and we seek out, other design-driven brands and producers in food, beverage, fashion, product and industrial design on a daily basis.
We realize we need to buy more products produced locally and we want to encourage others to support these people too. We’re the first to admit, we love Proscuitto Parma and Gucci boots, but if we all don’t buy more local products, those people making them will be out of business. And that isn’t good for anyone.
Some of these entrepreneurs behind these products are Italian, some follow the Italian artisan way of doing things, and some are just making really good, cool stuff that we love and think you will too.
I was inspired by my cousin’s (fashion designer Nanette Lepore) tireless work driving the “SAVE THE GARMENT DISTRICT” efforts in New York City and realized we could do something more here to support our local businesses.
There’s some statistics that are pretty surprising:
*Only 18 cents of every dollar, when buying at a large supermarket, go to the grower. 82 cents go to various unnecessary middlemen.
*In 1866, 1,186 varieties of fruits and vegetables were produced in California. Today, California’s farms produce only 350 commercial crops.
Produce shipped from distant states and countries can spend as many as seven to fourteen days in transit before they arrive in the supermarket. Most fruit and vegetable varieties sold in supermarkets are chosen for their ability to withstand industrial harvesting equipment and extended travel, not taste.
One study, by the New Economics Foundation, a London think-tank, found that when people purchase produce at a local farmer’s market vs. a chain supermarket, up to twice the money stays in the community. “That means those purchases are twice as efficient in terms of keeping the local economy alive,” says author and NEF researcher David Boyle.
Our goal with Create In California is to make people aware of what they’re buying and how they can make a difference too.
Stay tuned for more posts on Create In California events and news featuring products such as apparel and accessories, industrial design like furniture and bike components, and of course, food and beverages like beer and wine!