Sunday, March 16, 2008

Local Food Scores a Win

Many congrats go out to the Tiverton Land Trust, Manic Organic’s Nicole Vitello, the Recreation Commission, and all the countless others who have pulled together to create Tiverton’s first farmers market. This is just fantastic. More than anything, this has me really thinking about spring, summer, and all-things dealing with local food.

Why is the Sakonnet Growers Market such a big deal? It’s a win-win for anyone and everyone who participates:

• Local producers now have a new market to sell their products direct to the consumer. No middle-man to deal with means no mark-up and thus more money in the grower’s pocket.

• Visitors are spending their dollars locally, helping to boost our local economy. And with that, they get the freshest possible food. No trucking hundreds of miles to get from the farm to your table. That in itself is a huge step in lessening our environmental footprint.

• Our community binds together in new and refreshing ways. Farmers markets and the food they offer can thread together what would generally be different people from different parts of town. Not only are you meeting the farmer who grew your food, you’re meeting your neighbors.

I can’t wait for opening day on July 5 and hope to see you there!

But beyond the new farmers market, no discussion of local food would be complete without plugging our local CSA programs. Community Supported Agriculture is another cornerstone of a healthy local food economy. Here in the Sakonnet area, we have a bunch to choose from. Farm Fresh RI recently updated their listings of all CSAs in the state. Check it out, and get in early to ensure your piece of this year’s harvest.

And if you’re looking for something to read as the days are getting longer, be sure to pick up the Spring Issue of Edible Rhody. It’s always great to read about the vibrant food scene throughout the state.

Happy eating.

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