COVID + Farmers
By Micha Ide of Bright Ide Acres for Pierce County Fresh
This is an interesting time to be a farmer. Some farmers experienced a crisis this spring as regular sales channels (like restaurants, schools, and Seattle farmers markets) were shut down. Many of them are receiving a surge of interest in their products as families stock up on nourishing food and look to support local small businesses.
Farmers are creative and adaptive by nature, and are figuring out how to navigate this new economic reality. Some farmers are offering home delivery or shipping for the first time ever. Others are doing drop points and parking lot handoffs. We encourage consumers to seek out local foods as they look to fill their pantries, freezers, and fridges during these challenging times. We also encourage consumers to think outside the box. Even though farmers may be low on produce in the winter months, they may have other “value added” items for purchase like yarn, jam, honey, frozen berries and soaps.
Some farms offer CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) shares. This is usually a weekly or biweekly box of produce in the growing season. By purchasing a CSA early in the season you put important seed money (literally) into farmers pockets, and ensure your family will be eating nutritious, delicious local produce in the months ahead.
Use this link to search the Washington Food & Farm Finder to see which farms in your area are providing this crucial service.
This is a tough time for everyone. Farmers are resilient, but they need the support of their local communities to ensure their success. Please do what you can to purchase locally in these trying times.
Top Photo: L’Arche Farm in Tacoma, WA; credit Rylea Foehl
Bottom Photo: Stump Root Farm in Eatonville, WA; Photo Credit: Rylea-Foehl