The SFA has been featured on every major television and radio news network, in every major newspaper (including a front page piece by R.W. Apple Jr. in the New York Times,) and in magazines ranging from Southern Living to the National Review to Food Arts.
Illustrative highlights include:
In the Atlantic Monthly, Corby Kummer dubbed the SFA “this country’s most intellectually engaged (and probably most engaging) food society.”
Travel + Leisure chose the SFA as a recipient of a 2009 Travel + Leisure Global Vision Award. "Introduced in 2005, the Awards recognize the outstanding efforts of individuals and organizations that are working to preserve the world's natural and man-made treasures." Fellow honorees include the Museum of Islamic Art and the Rainforest Alliance, among others.
Drew Jubera, in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, described the SFA as a “kind of country-fried think tank of Southern eats with a national reputation among foodsters of all stripes (culinary, academic, journalistic, eataholic), earned from its home at the University of Mississippi.”
Saveur said, “For championing Southern food traditions and food producers otherwise likely to sink into oblivion and for showing us new ways to appreciate foods already bathed in glory – like barbeque, corn bread, and gumbo; for reminding us that Southern cooking is as diverse as the people involved in it; for doing all these things through a rollicking annual symposium and food-filled field trips that invite any curious eater to join the table and for aiming, always, to transcend race and class, the Southern Foodways Alliance, founded in 1999 and based in Oxford, Mississippi, deserves our obeisance. Members welcome.”
In the Wall Street Journal, Marialisa Calta quoted Jimmy Kennedy, a University of Mississippi graduate now cooking in Vermont, who, upon attending a Southern Foodways Symposium, said, “I heard more open discussion about race in one weekend than I ever did growing up here.”
Food & Wine recognized Amy Evans, SFA Oral Historian, as one of 35 people under 35, “fearsome talents" who will come to define American food for generations to come. And the Mississippi Department of Archives and History has twice awarded her the Elbert R. Hillard Award for Oral History.
Alex Young, chef at Zingerman’s Roadhouse in Ann Arbor Michigan, has been nominated twice for a James Beard Award. And, like a number of restaurateurs, he takes many a cue from the SFA. Here’s the gospel according to Zingerman’s:
“The SFA ‘documents and celebrates the diverse food cultures of the American South.’ …They are our Kevin Bacon in a food-centric ‘degrees of separation’ game. Many of the favorites on the Roadhouse menu are connected in some way to the valuable work that the SFA does to preserve and protect Southern foodways….Eastern North Carolina pulled pork barbecue, buttermilk fried chicken from Mason, Tennessee, and Anson Mills grits are just a few of the foods that come to the Roadhouse menu by way of the Southern Foodways Alliance.”