Robert Gardner is both the "Local Beet" editor and publisher, and is one of the founding members of LTHForum.com. He loves to eat. He’s discovered that the way to eating bliss is by eating local. Beyond pleasing the palate, Gardner and his family have discovered many other benefits from eating local. About five years ago, he and his family entered a quest to eat (nearly) all of their food from the Upper Midwest, a food zone Gardner calls the Big Ten Conference. Gardner began blogging about his 'eat local' habits. In the summer of 2008, fellow foodie and blogger, Michael Morowitz, suggested they team up. They launched the "Local Beet" to provide a practical approach to local eating.
Gardner has worked with a variety of groups and programs to build better local food systems. He worked closely with the Eli’s Farmer’s Market and their local food lecture series. He was on the Steering Committee for the Slow Food Chicago Daley Plaza Eat-In in 2009. In 2009, he served as the moderator for Green City Market’s 2009 Locavore Challenge Town Hall. He has served on the Advisory Board for Family Farmed's Expo and Financing Farm to Fork Conference. In 2010, Rob was elected to the Board of Directors of Slow Food Chicago.
Gardner actively seeks to take the message of eating local and "Local Beet’s" mission of a practical approach, to a wider audience. He contributed an essay to the Chicago Tribune’s "Perspective" section, and he as spoken to a range of audiences. Rob and his family’s "eat local adventures" have been featured on TV, radio and in the newspaper. He continues to relate the eat local lifestyle in the "Local Family" column on the "Local Beet."