Meat raised on small local farms costs more than meat from larger industrial farms. Here, one rack of local, grass-fed lamb (top) costs Brooklyn-based Cobblestone Catering $40 versus the $20 it costs for the same amount of lamb from New Zealand (above). And "organic" foods (like the red quinoa, below) are a more eco-conscious choice but come at a premium since organic certification is an expensive process.
Finally, this high/low matchup is a fine example of how pricey ingredients pack a punch: White asparagus and hand-foraged wild morels are much harder to source than green asparagus and oyster mushrooms. (The wild morels alone cost the caterer $45 per pound versus $8 per pound for the oyster mushrooms.)
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