The 10 Best Food-Focused Kickstarters

I've written before about how the most potent weapon consumers have in their arsenal against Big Food out there is located in their wallet. "One dollar, one vote," is the popular way of phrasing that sentiment. Stop giving money to companies whose politics you don't agree with, and it hurts their bottom line. But the flip side of that monetary protest coin is actually giving your money to businesses that are providing items of high quality. And the food section of Kickstarter is full of them.

Here are 10 that caught my eye:

Let's Build a Farm Together!

Primer Pastures is a Temecula-based family farm that's been raising pastured chickens and grass-fed lamb for the past few years by utilizing the concept of permaculture, "a system that effectively models the natural ecosystem with many varieties of plants and animals acting in synergy with one another on one farm." In April of last year, they signed a lease to add another 200 acres to the farm, and now need some extra dough in order to bring ducks, turkeys and cattle into the mix.

Another Kind of Sunrise

This project is trying to create a cereal-based takeaway cafe right in the heart of the Abbot Kinney district in Venice. But rather than the highly-processed and "chemically-enhanced" cereals littering the grocery stores, this one will sell only organically-created alternatives sourced from local, L.A.-based food artisans.

Fermentation on Wheels

While most Kickstarter campaigns have an air of "this is how we're going to help you," this effort from Eugene, Oregon is geared more towards helping society as a whole. The campaign is raising money to fund a year-long tour of small farms across America to promote sustainability, teach fermentation, and try to assist in creating a stronger link between consumers and locally-produced goods.

Reclaimed Micro Gardens

Based right here out of L.A., this project is an attempt to expand a business that specializes in creating micro gardens that are handmade from reclaimed wood.

SuperBag

This one takes us all the way to Antwerp, Belgium, where the growing community "Harvey" has designed portable and durable vertical grow bags that help urban gardeners take advantage of the limited space they have to work with. If you've tried farming out of your apartment, then you know how annoying those space limitations can be.

Beehives for the Hercules Community Garden

Pretty simple concept here: Man wants to bring beehives into his local community garden. Man doesn't have enough money to do it, seeing as it'll cost $5,000. Man wants some help with the start-up costs in order to bring raw, locally-produced honey to his community. Help him out!

iGreenPod: Biodegradable Coffee Pod

Ever use one of those Keurig single cup coffee brewers? They're great! You just stick in a package of whatever you want, press a button, and a few seconds later you have a delicious cup of hot joe to get you going in the morning. The big problem with the process, however, is that the single-serving packages, once used, go directly into the trash. This Kickstarter based out of Portland offers a biodegradable version.

SideChef

How many times have you tried to put together a dinner with a recipe you found online, only to have it turn into an annoying back-and-forth between the kitchen and the tiny, hard-to-read, even-harder-to-understand step-by-step instructions from your computer? The proposed app SideChef makes that process so much easier.

SugarBerg Matzah Treats

Okay, enough with those altruistic "let's help save the environment" campaigns. How about finally something that your taste buds will thank you for backing? Hence, this offering from two young best friends out of Santa Barbara who are trying to put together a handcrafted gourmet dessert matzah company based on "Grandma Bubbie" recipes. Get in as a $15 backer for your own sampling of the treat.

Exo: Protein Bars Made of Cricket Flour

Exo is a company that's trying to market a protein bar that's made out of cricket flour. As in, flour that's chock-full of cricket parts. Before you get too disgusted with that, know that crickets are some of the most nutritious things around. In fact, I'll have some more information on these Exo bars next week, which will hopefully be enough time for me to build up enough courage to eat the sample that's currently staring at me from my coffee table.

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About the Author

Rick Paulas has written plenty of things, some of them serious, many of them not, scattered over the vast expanses of the Internet. He lives in Los Angeles and is a White Sox fan.
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