Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Are You Shopping Today?

Yes, I Have a Blog and I Can Use It

I actually had draft post up for days last week before one of the kidz shut the computer down. I know I've let you all down during these key moments of eating local, but I'm still here; still eating local. I'll be doing some shopping at the Green City Winter Market today. Hopefully you will be too.

One of the real limitations on eating local around here is the lack of winter markets. There is no reason, climatically or ecologically that we cannot have winter markets. First of all, farmers can be growing right now and on and on, harvesting cool weather crops and using greenhouses. Second of all, there are plenty of things that can be sold after their growth: potatoes, cabbage, onions, apples, etc., etc., etc. It should be easier for farmers (or related) to store keepers than consumers. I'd rather buy as I need than store myself. It can happen.

Our limited winter markets, however, are not thriving. Sarah Stengner told us at her localvore lunch that few people were attending the mid-week fall Green City Markets (hence one of my reasons for going today). I heard from one of the vendors at the first indoor Green City Market that lookers way outnumbered buyers. To a good extent, the farmers are no so keen on the idea either. It's a long season, and they are ready for a break. Many manage their inventory so that they have nothing left by November, now. For instance, by last week already, Nicholl's Farm had little left beyond apples and potatoes. Hardin Farms said they were about out of apples. It's an uphill battle when people are not shopping and farmers have noting to sell.

Eating local does not end with a one week challenge, nor does it end when most markets pack up. As more people commit to eating local year-round, the more incentives there will be for year-round markets.

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