Seasonal Produce During a Pandemic

Right now is a trying time, full of uncertainty and fear. Our routines have been disrupted and we find ourselves having to think outside of the box for solutions to meet our everyday needs. You are not alone, and we are all in this together. It is especially important for us to remember our farmers right now too. This is the beginning of the growing season for many of them. They have all of their time, labor, and money invested in seasonal crops. With farmers markets and food distribution channels being disrupted these farmers are looking for outlets to sell their produce.

Farmers markets are trying to accommodate their patrons and vendors in the safest possible manner. They are offering drive thru pick ups with online ordering. On April 12, the Crescent City Farmers Market in New Orleans held a drive-thru market where customers ordered beforehand from a list of vendors. They had a line over ½ mile long! What a great sign of how much we value our local farmers!

No contact shopping is an ideal solution for many, but it defeats the whole purpose of the social aspect of the market. If we hope to have these markets around after the pandemic, we have to be there for them now. Right now so many vendors are utilizing alternate routes for getting products to their customers. The few that I have personally shopped with during this time are mailing items, allowing you to pick up items from their home, or delivering to your home. All of which do not require you to meet face to face.

Students at a farmers market
Student planting a plant

 

If you are looking for other ways to get groceries that offer more of a long term solution, I suggest signing up for a local Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) box. These programs offer weekly deliveries of seasonal produce and sometimes a variety of other handmade goodies. For example Berry Hill Farms in Loranger, Louisiana offers a variety of seasonal produce, the option to add eggs or beef weekly, a loaf of artisan bread, and a freshly prepared lagniappe item. These services are offered during peak growing seasons, so now would be the perfect time to find one near you. 

If signing up for a CSA does not seem like the right solution for you now, maybe it is something to consider for the future. I know we are all missing our local farmers markets right now and the peace we get by spending a few pleasurable hours around local friends, but it won't be much longer before we will all be back to normal. In the meantime I encourage you to think outside the box on ways to support your local farmers and artisans. 


Monday, April 20, 2020 
by: Tiffany Bel

Spring 2020 Reconnect Farmers Market Manager
Reconnect Environmental Sustainability Organization