Sustainable Food Practices in Metro Detroit

By: Aaron B. Cohen | April 30, 2021

Photo courtesy of Motor City Seafood.

As society accepts and prepares for the ecological challenges of the future, many businesses are exploring ways to positively affect the environment. This effort is especially noticeable in the food and beverage industry. Metro Detroit eateries are setting an example, adopting sustainable practices to mitigate the long-term effects of climate change. Here are a few local establishments making the effort to prepare delicious food in a way that serves their customers and the environment at large.

Motor City Seafood Co.

Located in Plymouth, Motor City Seafood Co. supplies Detroit’s finest restaurants with fresh, ethically sourced seafood. Selden Standard, Grey Ghost, Joe Muer Seafood and Flowers of Vietnam are just a handful of the elite establishments that rely upon their consistent quality for essential ingredients. Motor City Seafood vets each and every fishery with whom they do business, ensuring that no matter what, their product remains free of hormones, antibiotics and GMOs.

Brooklyn Street Local

Corktown’s Brooklyn Street Local is a shining example of how delicious and local work hand-in-hand. All of their ingredients are sourced within the region and you can taste the difference in their food. Known for their signature quiche, fresh salads and vegan desserts, you will feel great knowing that your enjoyment comes at no cost to the surrounding community. Beyond ingredients, the restaurant takes extensive measures to ensure their food waste is responsibly composted so that no part of the process takes an unnecessary toll on the environment.

Detroit City Distillery

In the heart of Eastern Market, Detroit City Distillery crafts top-of-the line spirits from locally-sourced ingredients. All of their grains are purchased from Michigan mills and their botanicals and fruit products are acquired within the market. In an effort to reduce waste, they make use of their byproducts, converting excess lemon pulp and citrus husks into syrups and stocks.

Farm Field Table

Farm Field Table is a Metro Detroit-based company offering meat subscription plans from Michigan farms straight to your doorstep. Along with a mission that implicitly lends itself to a more sustainable local food system, they take it a step further, partnering with Detroit restaurants whose scraps are collected and fed directly to the animals. By cycling nutrient-rich material back into the farming process – material that would otherwise go to waste – they close the gap that defined the food-industrial complex in the 20th century. 

Detroit Dirt

While not a restaurant itself, Detroit Dirt partners with local restaurants and breweries in an effort to facilitate composting on a massive scale. They use the organic byproducts and food waste to produce vitamin-rich soil, which is then distributed to local, organic farmers. Oftentimes, consumers only focus on the product that appears on their plate, but in order for any food system to thrive, sustainable practices must be employed at every stage. Good dirt equals good food.