Local Orbit founder Erika Block believes that more restaurants and shops would stock locally-sourced food -- if only the process of tracking it down and arranging distribution were easier. As of now, Block says, a chef, shop owner, or determined local eater must maintain many disparate relationships with farmers and producers in order to make sure all of the ingredients they need make it into the kitchen or onto the shelves. Local Orbit, an online hub that streamlines the connections between buyers and growers, seeks to provide the missing link that makes the process easier and much more efficient.
I sat down with Block at this year’s Poptech conference; as a social innovation fellow, she delivered a talk about how Local Orbit could broaden the horizons of possibility for local food markets everywhere. She sat down with me for an interview, and we discussed all of the above: