Thursday, December 27, 2007

Farmer’s Markets

While appealing on many levels, economically and emotionally for two, the reality is that until the markets are as conveniently accessed as the local supermarket, they won’t make much of a dent in the average consumers grocery shopping, regardless of the marketing slogans.

Reflections From The Region: Support our region's farms: Go 'locavorian'
Published 12:00 am PST Thursday, December 27, 2007

This holiday season The Bee's editorial board asked local residents this question, "What is the most important lesson that Sacramento or the region should take from 2007, and how can it be applied next year?"

The following is from Nancyjo Riekse, Placer County agricultural marketing director:
This was the fourth year of the Placer County Farm & Barn Tour, and I was amazed at how many visitors had never been to a working farm or knew there were small working farms and ranches that produced food that could be purchased directly.

Many people are aware of the large corporate agricultural producers seen along the freeways, where the farmers fly overhead to view their fields and monitor the watering and feeding systems through advanced technology. However, most small farms are nestled back among the hills and down the dirt roads. The have been worked for generations by family, friends and relatives who walk their fields. They know every inch of their land.

In the past year, large grocery chains started using "farmers markets" to describe their produce aisles, touting locally grown. But in today's world, what does "local" or "organic" really mean?