Summer Markets Update
Market season is upon us. Tomatoes are ripening up and our fall plants are going in the ground this week. Here are a few highlights from our markets where we directly distribute our produce.
Head Start Markets in Lowell
We are off to a great start at our two markets for Head Start families in Lowell.
At one site, we serve approximately 23-28 families each week. At our first market we found a caterpillar on the fennel, which was adopted by a classroom, heard many food stories and saw many children happily eating the snap peas and broccoli out of hand. A mom who is Vietnamese American was excited to see the fennel for her pho soup. Another dad shared that he is vegan for health reasons and encourages, shops and cooks vegetables for his children, shifting their diet to less processed foods. One dad originally from rural Thailand is the cook in his family, he was a farmer in Thailand from his teens into his 20's. Many families are interested in organic produce and happy to hear how we grow.
Last week, carrots in a basket were delivered to one of the preschool classrooms. Several children had them for snack that afternoon and we saw several leaving with their carrot in a little bag to take home.
The second Head Start site serves 30 families, support staff and teachers each week. The children at this site are also enthusiastic shoppers. At our first market a teacher came to visit the market with her 8 young students. They were studying farm. We talked about beneficial insects and pests(there was an aphid available that crawled on them), about each veggie, (looked at the roots and leaves), and sampled turnips, snap peas, and red lettuce. Most of them asked for a brown bag right then and shopped for their family, "salad" was the most popular request. One mom with a 3 and 5 year old have already come and volunteered at the farm. They had a great time and want to visit again.
Macayla Cote, our market assistant this year, is great talking with families and suggesting new ways to prepare the vegetables.
Fresh snap peas of the season, broccoli, carrots, lettuce, cucumbers, zucchini and herbs have been popular at both sites. Everyone can't wait for more tomatoes and corn.
Food for Families Market in Concord
Lines are formed by the time we get to market! Families are so excited to see the fresh produce and thankful for the farmers hard work. Board member emeritus Lucy Rosborough brings lovely flower bouquets and does home deliveries for about 5 individuals each week who are unable to come to market. The flowers are as much appreciated as the food. We have anywhere from 25-40 families/individuals visit each week.
The produce is so popular that we have been instituting limits on a few items to ensure that everyone gets a share. We do some careful arithmetic at the farm. :)
Thanks to everyone who helps on Saturday to get ready for this market.
And as always, thanks to the farmers hard work growing this food. Everything looks and tastes so good, it really makes my job a pleasure and very easy.