The Weblog

This page contains news, event information, and other items added by the market managers, including the weekly availability email. Be sure to check back regularly!

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Availability for March 15

We’re all back from deep south Georgia, where we attended the Georgia Organics conference. The annual conferences are wonderful affairs for both growers and eaters, and this year was no exception.

The keynote speaker this year was Joel Salatin, who is at the forefront of non-industrial food production at his farm, Polyface Farms in Virginia. In addition to speaking Friday night, he led an on-farm field day Saturday, hosted by a family farm near Douglas that is following in Joel’s footsteps.

Joel had many, many inspirational things to show and tell, but one of the more striking stories was his description of how his farm has moved this past year to an internet based buying program that allows local families to conveniently buy his products every six weeks. Moving to this new model has brought so many new customers to him that it has already become his primary retail market. He firmly believes that this new system, which has worked so well for him, is the future for farms getting their products into the hands of local families. The efficiencies it creates for both the farm and the family approaches (and maybe passes) the distribution efficiencies of even Wal-Mart.

Of course, you here in Athens have known that for over five years now. And today’s listing marks the start of the sixth year that Athens Locally Grown has been bringing you the bounty of many farms and producers surrounding Athens (now up to sixteen!). We anticipate continued growth this year, in farms, in variety of produce, and in families being served. It really is an exciting time to be doing what we’re doing, as the small natural farm is moving from the specialized niche to a sought after mainstream way for people to get their food.

Anyway, on to the listings! We do have a number of new items, though as this is the first week of the spring season, many of them are in very limited quantities. We have baby lettuce mix, mustard, micro beets, spinach, and arugula new this week from McMullan Family Farm. Double B farm has some goldenseal and echanacea products made right on the farm. Songbird Designs has several new soaps. We also have dairy products from Milky Way dairy, milled products from Mills Farm, coffee from 1000 Faces, processed foods from TaylOrganics, and other products I’m sure I’m forgetting.

Oh—many of you have been asking about Whole Earth Granary, and their lack of products the last couple weeks. I did speak with them a few days ago, and discovered that they are recovering from a devastating burglary. Someone took everything—including the ovens! They are in the process of putting their business back together, and they hope to return very soon.

As always, we greatly appreciate your support. It has brought us to our sixth year, has brought new growers to Athens, and has brought other communities to open markets like ours. The latest is the Cumberland Farmers Market in Sewanee, Tennessee, which has begun taking orders this week. We’ll see you on Thursday from 4:30 to 7pm at Gosford Wine!