Adventures in flora, fauna, food, and the great unknown.

Supporting local farms

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By no stretch of the imagination is everything in our fridge local, but when the farmers’ markets are open, Mike and I do pick up a few items—especially cheeses (if you’ve never had fresh mozzarella from a farmers’ market, drop everything and get some right now; it’s entirely different from what you find at a supermarket), meats, and eggs. The practices at these farms are more humane than those at most of those at larger ones, so I feel a little better about consuming their animal products. I’ve also split a CSA share with friends before, and it was, overall, a good experience. And although Mike and I don’t go so far as to get the Dogma Box, Boston Organics does use as much locally sourced produce as possible in each of their boxes while still retaining variety—in fact, some of those same farms bring produce to our local farmers’ markets.

The Atlas Farms (Deerfield, MA) booth at the Copley Square Farmer's Market. (WBUR, "Copley Farmers' Market ," May 19, 2009, Creative Commons Attribution.)

This is all a rather clumsy way of saying that I love the idea of eating locally and supporting local farms, and I’m gradually inching my way in that direction. I could definitely try harder, but I’ve found that the best way to institute change in my life is to do so in small increments; it’s far less overwhelming, and it’s brought about much more success.

Recently, I discovered a set of short promotional films from the Maine Farmland Trust and Pull-Start Pictures called Meet Your Farmer. These videos are very well shot and produced, but they also touch upon something that I think so many people today are missing—a true connection with our food, and the people and practices that bring it our tables. I enjoyed watching each of them, learning about each of the different farms and farmers, but this was one of my favorites because of the way it brings all of the different pieces of the puzzle together into a whole:

You can watch other Meet Your Farmer videos at Pull-Start Pictures’ Vimeo page. Do you know about similar features on Massachusetts farms? I’d love to see them. I’d also love to hear about your experiences eating locally.


Author: JD Doyle

Bookbinder, knitter, spinner, singer, runner, vegetarian, & sometime poet.

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