Celebrate Your Farmer!

Smart Markets wishes you a very happy holiday and hopes you enjoy the best that this country has to offer this weekend.  I am inspired on this 4th of July to share why we are in this business of providing farmers and local food entrepreneurs the opportunity to sell their products directly to customers like you.

It is not a mystery why small farmers cannot make a living selling wholesale – the economies of scale just do not work for them.  We believe that it is very important to save the small farms that still exist in our area and to help young people who want to farm be able to do it.  We also take seriously the opportunity the markets offer for small, family-owned and operated food businesses to be nurtured under our low-overhead, supportive guidance. Even though we always hate to see them go, we are always excited to see our vendors move on to bigger and more permanent opportunities or use the markets to establish a sound foundation for their storefronts.

We have also seen so many farmers grow along with us – and we are grateful to them for their commitment to you.  They notice what you like and want to see in the markets, and they go out and plant something new just for you. They buy or lease more land; they plant more trees, they sow new seed varieties; and they are willing to do this because they trust that you will continue to support them.

If you have not noticed in previous years,  you will soon learn that we take every chance we get to remind you that each patriotic holiday underscores our commitment.  These guys represent our path to healthier eating at home and away from home too.  For those of us who need to rely, if only occasionally, on the cooking of strangers,  how great is it to have your neighbors cooking up their national dishes or developing their own distinctive cuisine for us to enjoy!  Helping these cooks to move on to restaurants and storefronts of their own is the best way to reduce the prevalence and influence of fast food in our neighborhoods. And that will happen one day thanks to you and your patriotic support of these hard workers who feed you so well.

So take a little time this week to mosey through the market and see what you can come up with to celebrate your local farmer and friendly chef throughout the holiday weekend.   I hope you will stop by the Smart Markets tent first and pick up some recipes and follow where they lead.