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Contest rewards local food at restaurants

A new program from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is encouraging chefs to dig into locally grown products this summer.

The Dig into Local 90 Day Challenge aims to promote the bounty of N.C. agricultural products available during the growing season by challenging chefs from across the state to create new menu options in their restaurants.
As part of the challenge, restaurants must create a customized menu of dishes featuring products sourced from North Carolina. Each menu must show information about the local ingredients, including the farm, producer or processor. In addition, participating restaurants are required to submit a summary at the end of the challenge with information about their menu creations. Restaurants will be judged on their creations, and the winner will receive a customized marketing package to use in its area.
The challenge runs from June 1 to Aug. 31. Restaurants interested in participating can register by sending an email to by May 31. For additional rules and questions about the challenge, contact Tim Parrish at 919-707-3137 or