Hello fellow eaters:

A final recommendation from the sustainability conference (holy cow, it was two months ago already!) was that we need to cultivate, ahem, new farmers. We find ourselves in the curious situation that small farmers are really struggling, while the subsidy system favors very large farms, often not owned by those who operate them. This system has favored unsustainable corn and soy monocultures as opposed to different strategies that are better for the soil, for the environment, and for us eaters. Furthermore it has left us with the idea that food comes from big farms far away from the city. This has obviously not been friendly to local or organic food production and distribution. One of the ways to address these problems is by encouraging new farmers. 40 years of the organic foods movement has suggested that small farms can be very functional. There are folks doing very good work in this regard, both getting new farmers onto farms and creating mentorship programs to help new and existing farmers make this transition. But for these programs to be economically sustainable, they have to be part of a systemic change in which we place more value on food produced closer to home with fewer bad inputs. This, of course means that we have to do or keep doing all the things we have all talked about in the past two years: ask where our food comes from, buy local and organic, make the case to our lawmakers to rethink the agriculture subsidy program (this is less fun than going to the farmers market, but it is important), and ask those around us to do the same.

Also in local food news, the Cleveland Metroparks is running a food-oriented film festival at the Rocky River Nature Center, Tuesday evenings (7-9pm) for the next three weeks. For more info see, the Cleveland Metroparks website (www.clemetparks.com) and click on the programs button near the top.

EcoVillage Produce will have more pears. They will also have lettuce, swiss chard, as well as green zebra tomatoes, hungarian wax and bell peppers, mixed cooking greens, collards, carrots, beans, butternut squash, basil, parsley, thyme, and flowers.

Berry Good Farm will have apple pies and pumpkin rolls and eggs this week. They will also have small pumpkins, macintosh apples, and broom corn to use for decorating. I think that they still will have onions, garlic, and other assorted garden veggies. Of course, they will also have honey and honey products, sweet breads, and other pies.

Hooper Farms will be back again this week with breads, dipping oils, and assorted garden vegetables.

Cathie Brenkus will be back this week with her festive textiles.

Bethany will have yard and house plants, herbs, and baked goods.

George Cormack will be at the market again this week with photos of Cleveland past. He also has an "agrilocator" listing farms and orchards that are "u-pick" or that sell directly to the public.

The Gordon Square Farmers’ Market: put more conviviality in your shopping.

GSFM is located in the parking lot of Bethany Presbyterian Church at W. 65th and West Clinton streets (one block south of Detroit Ave.).

Every Saturday through October 24, 9am-1pm.

Feed back? Please email or talk to us at the GSFM booth on Saturday.

ward17farmersmarket@gmail.com

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