Field to Table is an Arlington-based, non-profit organization dedicated to building communities throughout Northern Virginia through the encouragement of healthy eating. The organization is part of the nationwide "locavore" movement, which encourages people to reestablish their relationship with the land and purchase from local farmers and food preparers. The emphasis is on nutrition, taste, quality, and freshness in what we buy, not on the misguided values of mass production, long shelf life, and long-distance transportation that drives so much of what is sold as food in the United States. We strive to bring residents a convenient, varied blend of local producers of fruits and vegetables, baked goods, dairy products, flowers, and specialty foods that focus on improving the nutritional experience and overall health of the community.
Field to Table is a 501(c)(4) community welfare organization. Local farmers markets, founded and managed by local residents rather than by an absentee organization, offer an astounding benefit to adjacent neighborhoods by creating ties that bind the broader community together. Each of the markets under the Field to Table label has its own market committee that determines the vendors to be permitted in the market. The committee handles much of the social media effort in support of the particular market. In this way the market quickly reflects the values and desires of the people who live there. The organization relies extensively on local volunteer support by people of almost any age who want to provide civic support in Northern Virginia. The constituent markets support each other in meaningful ways by sharing their experiences, as well as by adopting the "best practices" of sister markets. These weekly community gathering places bring together people who enjoy cooking and healthy, seasonal eating, and socializing. The result is a strong sense of place which attracts people from miles around. Field to Table farm vendors are generous contributors of fruits and vegetables to local food banks to support those in need. The organization's structure is intended to permit these local market to function in Northern Virginia for decades to come.