These restaurants were nominated for, applied for, and received our stringent Snail of Approval certification. The Snail of Approval logo in their windows or in their advertisements indicates that each of them meets or exceeds our good, clean, and fair standards for sustainable businesses and has submitted compelling evidence to that effect to our Chapter Board.
By good we mean that the food that they serve is good-tasting and good for you. Evidence that a restaurant is good includes positive reviews from local media and food bloggers, recent top-10 or top-20 awards from newspapers and/or food magazines, selection of the chef as a delegate to Terra Madre, or other national or international recognition.
By clean we mean that the food that they serve has a low environmental impact. Proteins should rank high on Whole Foods' animal welfare standards scale and the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch Buyers' Guide. Fruits and vegetables should be certified organic and/or sourced from OEFFA member farms. To promote biodiversity, the menu should feature items from Slow Food's heritage foods list, the Ark of Taste.
By fair we mean that everyone in the chain of production is treated fairly. This precludes, for example, the use of milk or grass-fed beef from Ohio's DRC prison beef program, which pays prisoners $1/hour and undercuts traditional farmers, as well as food from producers known to mistreat workers—for example, Florida tomato growers. Fairness extends to the price paid to farmers, the wages paid to employees, and the information provided to consumers about the sourcing of their meals. Ideally, fairness should also extend to consumers in the form of the availability of some moderately-priced menu options.
Submission to the Snail of Approval program is by invitation only, but our Board welcomes suggestions. If you have read our Snail of Approval rubric and know of a business that qualifies, please don't hesitate to contact us at email@example.com.