The Oregon Winter Blues

The days have now turned into months and I can’t tell you how much I miss it. I had heard about the dismal Oregon winter, but I never expected this – gray after gray day of…

No farmer’s markets!

Farmers marketI can only take heart from the telltale signs of coming springtime that our farmer’s markets will soon return. These markets are everywhere from early spring through late fall and Oregon is blessed with many small farms that bring their produce directly to the consumer through these markets. Every type of fruit and vegetable, meats, cured meats, cheeses, wines and anything and everything delicious you can imagine comes to market in this way. The market for the small farmer is strong in Oregon, where consumers go out of their way to buy local produce – even at the chain stores, which are forced to identify goods from local farms due to consumer demand. The fact that consumers here demand local produce means that new farms are popping up throughout the state and the fact the producers can command retail instead of wholesale prices for their goods creates a situation where a small farmer can succeed.

Without the farmers markets, we would be faced with only the bland choices offered by large corporate farms and grocers. Even the Whole Foods stores and their type cannot compete with the freshness, variety and great flavors brought to us by farmer’s markets. They are a national treasure.

Thanks to Adam Mahler at The Untangled Vine, we have become aware of the efforts of Congress-person Marcy Kaptur of Ohio (do we need to mention she’s a Democrat) to introduce legislation that will support the growth of farmer’s markets on a national scale. Needless to say, I think this is a great cause, not only for our stomachs, but for our environment, as small farms are less damaging to the planet than large scale corporate industrial farming. Check out The Untangled Vine for more details and here for Kaptur’s article in The Nation.

Take a few minutes to support small family farms and organic agriculture and write to your Congress-person in support of this effort. If your representative is a Republican, you may want to write twice.