Press Release: New Glasgow Farmers Market Launches Food Bucks Pilot Project in Pictou County

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 3, 2019
Press Release: New Glasgow Farmers Market Launches Food Bucks Pilot Project in Pictou County

The New Glasgow Farmers Market (NGFM) is thrilled to announce our participation in the launch of a province-wide project to increase food security and support households in need across Nova Scotia. The NGFM is working with the Farmers Markets of Nova Scotia and four other member markets on the project named the Nourishing Communities Food Bucks Pilot Study. We are working with local partner organization, Kids First to issue “food bucks”, an anonymous alternative currency that can be redeemed at any vendor stall at the NGFM. This pilot project is built upon successful programming in British Columbia and an expansion of work done for three seasons at the Wolfville Farmers’ Market and a previous season at the New Glasgow Farmers’ Market.

“The New Glasgow Farmers Market is proud to participate in the Nourishing Communities Program. Making a positive impact on overall health and well-being in our community and increasing access to local food and goods is at the core of our organization. To be able to expand on this goal in such a meaningful way is very rewarding for us”, comments Kristi Russell, Market Manager of the New Glasgow Farmers Market.

Michelle Ward, Executive Director says “Partnering with the New Glasgow Farmers Market has been such a great experience for our organization and families in our community. Families are embraced as part of the Farmer’s Market family and treated with such respect. They have told us so many positive outcomes from their experiences and we are pleased to continue to be a part of this program”.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to explore just how big of an impact a farmers’ market can have for its community”, says Justin Cantafio, Executive Director of Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia (FMNS) Cooperative. “Farmers’ Markets are so much more than a once-a-week shopping destination. They’re social, cultural, and economic hubs and anchors in their communities.”

This project is made possible thanks to generous funding and support provided by Communities, Culture and Heritage Nova Scotia, who have indicated that a successful pilot project may mean an opportunity to expand to even more markets next year. Thanks also goes to the Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia who has organized and made this opportunity possible.

Participating partner organizations will select participants in need who will benefit from reduced food insecurity and increased social inclusion. As recently as 2014, over 15% of Nova Scotians experienced food insecurity, including 22% of children, and food bank use has been steadily increasing in Nova Scotia . A 2015 study found that Nova Scotia’s food insecurity rates were the highest in all of Canada , and seniors are particularly vulnerable to food insecurity , with 19.7% of Nova Scotian women over 65 and 14.7% of Nova Scotian men over 65 living in low-income households .

The Nourishing Communities Food Bucks Pilot Study will:
• Contribute to systematically overcoming Nova Scotia’s high rates of food insecurity;
• Provide much needed opportunities for social and community engagement for people experiencing poverty, food insecurity, and social isolation throughout Nova Scotia, and;
• Support the production and availability of locally grown and produced foods.

The Nourishing Communities Food Bucks Pilot Study has three principal objectives:
1. To provide financial support to those in need to access healthy food;
2. To provide an experience that supports physical, mental, and community health;
3. To support local producers and farmers in developing a robust food system in Nova Scotia.

Dinner by the River 2019

GET TICKETS HERE!

Here it is! Our summer farm to table event that you’ve been waiting for!

Tables and sparkling trees will line the beautiful New Glasgow Riverfront and guests will enjoy a farm to table meal in an all local experience!

You will enjoy an elegant three course meal made possible by your local producers paired with Nova Scotia wines while listening to the jazz stylings of Men About Town. After dinner, dance the night away under the stars with Mike & the MacPhersons.

A cash bar stocked with Nova Scotia wines, spirits from Nova Scotia Spirit Co. and craft beer will be available.

Tickets will be $85 and will also include a ride home with CHAD transit.

Tickets are limited and will go on sale online only June 4th at 9am. Any remaining tickets will be available for purchase at the Market on June 8th.

**Most dietary restrictions can be accommodated but you must let us know 2 week prior to the event. After you purchase tickets, contact us at events@ngfarmmarket.com

Guests must be 19+

Atlantic Arts & Appetites

We have so many talented artisans in our part of the country. No matter where you travel around Atlantic Canada, there is always something that makes every place uniquely and beautifully its own. Besides our amazing people, it’s part of our charm.

This summer, we want to celebrate our inspiring artisans and of course, no celebration is complete without food and music. Atlantic Arts & Appetites will bring the very best of those together during a special weeknight showcase.

Visitors and locals will discover inspiring Maritime Artisans, enjoy the smells and tastes of delicious foods and listen to talented local musicians combined to make a perfect local mid-summer night experience.

There are only 3 dates, Wednesday June 26, July 17 and August 21, from 4 until 8pm.

If you are interested in becoming a featured exhibitor, you can apply online HERE. If you have any questions, please contact us at hello@ngfarmmarket.com .

Better Late than Never!

We normally do our year in review in January. You know, when people are supposed to do them. However, maybe that’s a new resolution for next year!

We wanted to let you know what we’ve been up to and what our plans are for the upcoming year.

2018

We began the year with Chill Out, getting ready for the Winter Carnival season. Spring was a challenge for many of our farmers. We had a super late killing frost in June and crops across the province were lost. Some numbers say that up to 80% of provincial wild blueberry crops were lost. Many other crops were damaged and the growing season cut short. For the consumer, that meant a little less variety and shortened supply. We had hoped that we might be fortunate enough for a longer, warmer season at the end of the year, but unfortunately Mother Nature didn’t see it it that way and before we knew it, winter made its appearance again.

Burning bales of hay in the corn field to protect the corn that is left from the frost the other night. The smoke acts as a barrier from frost coming down and touching the plant . Photo Cred: Red Mountain Farm

Programs

Raise the Barn

We announced our plans to Raise the Barn. We are are still working on getting a ballpark on costs which is why you haven’t heard a whole lot more on this yet. As this is a non-traditional build and we are building on the existing dome foot print, there are costs associated with taking down and re-installing electrical and plumbing, dismantling the dome etc. Once we have those costs, we can start looking for grants and kick fundraising into high gear. Vendors have donated/raised over $1200 themselves already!

Proposed plan for the new barn

healthy living program

Thanks to the Aberdeen Health Foundation, we were able to complete one of our goals of making local more accessible in our community. With help from our friends and partners over at Kids First, ten families were given $100 per month to spend at the Market for seven months. The program just wrapped up in January and we are pleased to say that it was very successful. Look for our final report on that coming soon. It is our goal to be able to run the program again this year and we are working hard behind the scenes to expand it.

THe Giving garden

The Giving Garden has morphed into an educations space. We were able to have some local camps come by as well as a youth group from the YMCA. We were able to talk about how food is grown and have an open conversation around food, the importance of the local food chain and more. They were all great kids and we are always so happy to see how engaged and interested they are in their food and where it comes from and happy to help them re-frame how they think about food.

school and Community engagement

One of the things we love the most is engaging with our youth and community. We have spoken at several local schools of varying ages. We have covered topics such as why local is important, where we fit in out food supply system, agriculture, entrepreneurship and more. We love engaging wherever we can and are always open to attending events and speaking about how the Market works and the importance supporting local has to our local economy with real life examples. If you would like us to get involved on a specific topic for your school, group or event, you are more than welcome to contact us at ngfarmmarket@gmail.com .

We love speaking about local and the impact on our community

Friends of the Market

We had some great friends join us this past year. We welcomed yoga at the Market, a reading by Author Sarah Butland and our friends from the New Glasgow Library held a very special pop-up library where guests could even pick up their own card! The YMCA visited us often and brought Y on the Move to host activities for the kids and highlight their upcoming programs. We are very thankful to have had these activities at the Market. We look forward to hosting some more unique workshops. If you are with an organization and would like to join us with an activity, please e-mail us at ngfarmmarket@gmail.com

Events

Events are vital to our sustainability. In addition to table fees, fundraising is part of our operational revenue. It also allows us to contribute to programs like the Healthy Living Program and maintain the Giving Garden. We like to try new and different things and of course, we like to have fun!

In 2018, we hosted a Luau, the All Hallow’s Ball for Halloween and ended the season with our first event Winter Wonderland Gala. Everything was farm to table with as much as possible purchased from our farmers and food vendors and each event was highlighted with some of our amazing local musicians.

Our events compliment our other fundraising initiatives like our monthly 50/50 draws, and our annual Mother’s Day and Christmas baskets.

Keep an eye out for our 2019 events, coming soon!

Improvements

Heaters

As we mentioned earlier, our fundraising helps us to make improvements to the Market. These are funded solely with Market funds and sometimes grants. Past improvements have included new appliances, upgrades to fixtures, the Market kitchen and more. There are always little ones that happen throughout the year that you may not notice, but we have two notable ones for 2018.

This year, one of the big things was our brand new heaters. We’d like to extend our sincere thanks the Municipality of Pictou County for contributing $2500 towards these heaters. The remaining $12,000+ was fully paid for by the Market with funds that have been raised and saved over the last years. These heaters are a bit of a game changer for us. Not only did it make the shoulder season in November-December much more pleasant for shoppers and vendors, it means for the first time ever, we will be opening the dome early, beginning March 2nd this year! We have vendors waiting in the wings to join us and we cannot accommodate them because we can’t house them all in the Market building.

Even better, the heaters can be re-used in the barn and then we will have two year round buildings so we don’t have to turn would-be vendors away.

marketwurks

Another improvement we’ve made that is noticeable from all aspects is the addition of a comprehensive software designed specifically for Farmers Markets. This program is being used all across North America and we were one of the the first (if not, the first) Market in Nova Scotia to use this program.

This system allows vendors to apply online, provides for more effective organization and planning and streamlines the application process for users. From a customer viewpoint, you are able to see a real time listing of 2019 vendors and even a Market Map to give you an idea of who is where at the Market on a given Saturday. You can also find vendor profiles and contact information along with their dates of scheduled attendance.

Our partners at MarketWurks and their team of stellar software engineers are always working on making changes and adding improvements to make it a better experience for markets, vendors and patrons.

2019

What’s happening in 2019?

atlantic arts & appetites

We are pleased to introduce a new mini-series of weeknight Markets focused on Artisans and Food called Atlantic Arts & Appetites. This is aimed at giving residents and visitors to the area snapshot of local products and music. In addition to local vendors, we are opening this up to anyone across the Maritimes for these special Markets. These market will take place from 4-8pm and are currently set for June 26, July 17 and August 21. Watch for more information. If you are interested in becoming a vendor for this series, you can apply online, just pick the Atlantic Arts & Appetites dates: APPLY HERE

If you are attending only these dates, your sign-up fee is waived

Events & Fundraising

This year we will have our annual Mother’s Day Basket and Christmas Basket as well as our monthly 50/50.

We will have 2 events this year. We will have a summer Farm to Table event, details are still to be confirmed. We are also happy to announce that our Winter Wonderland Gala returns with the Kilted Chef on December 7th, 2019. We’ll keep you posted!

We look forward to an exciting 2019, stay tuned!

See you at the Market!

Music at the Market- Jim & Kim Hadley (& friends)

We have a special musical Saturday planned for you at the Market this Saturday. We are welcoming Jim Hadley and his wife Kim. But not only that, they will be joined by some of their musically talented friends, and if you read on, you just might recognize them!

Jim Hadley is a member of the band ” Where Rivers Meet”
Beresford New Brunswick  singer-songwriter Jim Hadley has performed across Canada and in the United  States. He started his musical performances playing the harmonica at the age of  4 and was playing for audiences from that moment on. He was playing the guitar  by the age of 10 and had developed an interest in singing at the same time. It
was not long before he was performing for audiences at various events. This  included playing harmonica and singing as a guest on various Radio Shows both in the US and Canada.  His love of music spans across many genres from Rock & Roll  to Country to Swing / Big Band.  He has had the opportunity to perform to, and  delight large audiences across Canada. In addition, he has performed for  Broadway  genre productions.

Jim released his first album titled “At Last”
in October of  2008 while living in Dieppe NB.  It  includes an English and French compilation of songs he has written )
and  composed.  This album was recorded with the musical talents and
support of his  wife Kim ( vocals )  and son Scott (vocals / Drums ).

Jim currently performs with his wife Kim as the group “ Silver Sound “ at various types of venues, and also performs with the group “ Classic Country “ as one of the  lead singers  and lead / rhythm guitarists.  (source: http://www.whereriversmeet.ca/jim-hadley.html)

 

Also joining Jim and Kim are a music duo you may recognize. Nelson (aka beekeeper at Macd’s Bees and Maureen Macds Bees product developer extraordinaire) are also a very talented musical family.

Nelson & Maureen Music

They will be performing a set but also joining them are Declan Ror  and Avery Cameron for a couple of tunes.  You will be treated to an array of music genres; something for everyone to enjoy!

Image may contain: 1 person, sitting Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, people standing

 

NGFM Healthy Living Program

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We are excited and proud to introduce the NGFM Healthy Living program!

In our County,  there are many families who are food insecure meaning they do not always have enough money to get the food they need, much less have access to quality local food and we believe everyone deserves that!

We recognize that there are families who would like to shop at the Market but face a number of barriers including financial and social barriers.   We have been trying to figure out a way to make the Market more accessible to these families for awhile.   E

BC has an established provincial program being run with their Farmers Markets and Wolfville has run one successfully for the last few years as well. Of course we have been wanting to make this happen for our County and with a little help from our friends, we are able to do just that!

The NGFM Healthy Living Program will provide 10 low income families with $100 in Market Money for 7 months. We wanted to make sure that it continued through Christmas as this is often the hardest time for families.  The total investment in this program is $7,000.  This program is fully funded by the Aberdeen Health Foundation with in kind support from Kids First and the New Glasgow Farmers Market.

Kids First is a charitable organization that serves low income families with children. We approached Kids First because they have families with children and we wanted to give the kids the opportunity to have a good start in learning about local food and all that shopping at the Market has to offer them. This opportunity not only gives families access to healthy food, but they also get the added benefit of  social interaction and the feeling of inclusion in our community, something that can be difficult for these families.

For some of these families, the Market seems unattainable and intimidating. These families struggle for necessities and may not be able to afford little luxuries, like a nice bar of soap or a toy for their child, much less healthy local food. These little luxuries and something like eating out are often something that other people do. These families may not know the process of ordering fresh cuts of meat or had the opportunity to eat some of the unique produce at the Market, so much of this will be new to them.

These families will attend  a Market info session to help them understand what to expect. Together, we will be addressing their concerns with them to help make these processes less intimidating and help them to feel comfortable.

These families will have access to programming that will help with nutritional education, food preparation and more. This program will be administered with kindness, respect and dignity, free of stigma.

This program also does double, even triple duty.  As always, 100% of Market Money, including the Market Money from this program, spent at the Market goes directly to vendors (as it always does). So at the same time as these families benefit, local farmers, food producers and artisans that sell at the Market also benefit. They make their livelihood and in turn will spend their money in the community and then those businesses benefit too!  A ripple effect, like a drop in a pond!

This is a win-win-win, especially for families, but vendors and the community as a whole.

Healthy Living Program

These families will now have access to healthy local food. They will be able to be part of a community where they may have felt isolation before. Hopefully we will be able to illustrate to them that the Market is a comfortable place and that items are not as expensive as they think and that eating local, healthy food IS within their reach. These families will get to listen to music, they can take their child to lunch or buy them a special treat, maybe they can buy a roast or try some micro greens or a new variety of beet or carrot.  Maybe they can buy a nice bar of soap or enjoy some gluten free bread that they may not have been able to afford before. Perhaps they can buy a toy for their child’s birthday and at Christmas they can have a turkey.

This is about whole health and increasing quality of life and adding tools to the kids toolbox to help them make great choices that will set them on the right path as they grow up. This is about everyone being part of the community and the Market giving back.

If the program is successful and feedback from the families are positive, we will find a way to run it again. Someday maybe we will also have a provincially run program! Dream big.

We would like to thank the Wolfville Farmers Market  and the Farmers Market of Nova Scotia for helping us along the way, the team at Kids First and of course the Aberdeen Health Foundation for making this program possible!

Thank YOU for supporting the Market and coming out to shop with us every week.  It is because of your support that we have the encouragement to keep doing better.

 

Who’s Up For the Challenge?

Another peak season has arrived at our doorstep. As the weather warms and your farmers crops grow, the Market is bustling with that familiar laughter and neighborhood chatter.

This Saturday, we are proud to open our for our 10th peak season! As many of you know, the Market has evolved so much over the last 10 years, it’s pretty amazing!

Last year, we were thrilled to be able to build the Giving Garden. While the Giving Garden committee is hard at work making plans for the growing part, the other important part of the space is the patio which we hoped to turn into an outdoor classroom of sorts. We envisioned all kinds of things out there that all community members and visitors could access, tying into our vision of whole health and wellness.

We have been working on it! We have approached our vendors and some of our community organizations and friends of the Market. We challenged them…we really wanted to offer experiences at no charge in an effort to make them accessible for everyone regardless of situation and take cost out of the equation. We believe that everyone should have a chance to join in activities at the Market. So the deal was, if you are willing to join the cause and offer your service for free or at cost, then we will give you the space at no cost.

Because our community is amazing and believes in this project as much as we do, they were very generous and hopped on board to donate their time. They really saw this as a chance to make this something amazing, and we thank them for helping us get the ball rolling!

We are proud to tell you that as a result, we have some fabulous things coming up on garden patio. In future, you just need to look at the chalkboards for information on what’s coming up as well as our weekly poster that is published on Facebook weekly.

Coming up this Saturday, May 19th at 10:30am, local author Sarah Butland will be on the patio to give a reading.

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Reading at the Market Giving Garden at 10:30am, May 19th

June 16th

On June 16th we are very pleased to welcome Rachael MacLean and Raina McDonald to host yoga classes, free of charge!

Rachael is kindly hosting a free kids yoga class from 9 until 9:30am and then at

10-11am
A free all-levels yoga experience with Raina.
A restorative yet activating space to listen to your body and soul while strengthening and opening. Elements of gentle flow, breath and guided meditation…riverside!
Bring your mat and dress in comfy layers.

market yoga  Raina Yoga

This is just the beginning we have dates yet to be set but in the works are other exercise opportunities, a crochet/knit class and perhaps a flower arranging class or two.

Now here’s the challenge to you! We have lots of dates up until the end of October…we invite artisans & makers, musicians, fitness instructors, nutritionists, gardeners/garden clubs, authors, farmers, painters, poets, massage therapy, kids activities, you get the idea….come out and share your knowledge, lead a workshop, share what you know, teach others. The deal is the same, if you offer your service for free or at cost, you can have the space at no cost to you. You just need to contact us, throw your idea out there, we know there are lots of great ideas. We can work together to figure it out and  we’ll find a date and we can help you with registration as needed. Local, grass-roots organizations welcome, this is also a good time to give out information for your services.

This truly is for the community, by the community to better the community. Be part of the big picture, meet new friends and neighbours and you might just learn something in the process!

PS if you have spare yoga mats in good condition that you would be willing to donate, please bring them to the welcome table at the Market. We will keep them out side every Saturday for anyone that wishes to use them during Market hours.

Introducing Henny & Cecil

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Meet Henny & Cecil from the New Glasgow Farmers Market located in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia (Pictou County along the beautiful Northumberland Shore)! They are about to embark on a quest to visit as many Farmers Markets as possible. Their mission: to spread the message about the importance of Farmers Markets and the love of local…wherever you are!

If you happen to come across Henny or Cecil, please take them to your local Farmers Market and document your journey with photos along the way. Once at your Farmers Market, take a photo of them there and then post the photos to their Facebook page and tag us on instagram @ngfarmmarket. Use the hashtags #henny&cecil #ngfarmmarket  and #FarmersMarket  *Hint: They also love craft breweries and local wineries too!

Once you have shown them around the Market, please give them to someone at that Market or another person who you know will take them to another Market. If possible, take a photo of the adoptive “farmer” who will take them to the next Farmers Market.

Let’s see how many places they can visit! We will share all of their adventures on Facebook and Instagram.

We love mail, if you would like to send us a postcard or letter from Henny or Cecil, we would love to post it at our Market!

Mail it to:

New Glasgow Farmers Market
261 Glasgow St.,
New Glasgow, Nova Scotia
B2H 5C2

MORE ABOUT HENNY & CECIL

Henny & Cecil were “born” in 2017. Created by New Glasgow Farmers Market (NGFM) vendor Melissa Zimmerman of Handcrafted by Melissa. Melissa has been a vendor with the NGFM from it’s beginning! She crochets beautiful scarves, blankets, hats, and stuffed friends just like Henny & Cecil.

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Henny & Cecil were chosen by Market Manager Kristi to go on this very special journey. She thought they were the perfect pair to help spread happiness and also a way to see how many people would take part and see how far they could travel so that everyone could see what other Farmers Markets were like.

Like anyone, before they could leave on their journey, Henny & Cecil had to prepare. They visited Lisa with LK Designs. Lisa outfitted them with specially made tags that would stand up to travel. The tags holds the important information on what to do if you meet Henny or Cecil.  Lisa makes children’s clothing, reading pillows and so many other things, are loving created by hand!

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Once they had their tags, Henny & Cecil traveled to Charlotte of Quilted Chaos. Charlotte was tasked with making Henny & Cecil’s journey comfortable and safe. She made them a bag that would be carried with them them. It would keep them clean and give their adoptive farmers an easy way to carry them.

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Henny & Cecil on the way to get fitted for their custom bags

Just before they leave, Kristi will make sure the instructions are carefully attached to Henny & Cecil’s tags.

Now they are ready to go!

Stay tuned and let’s see how far their adventure takes them! Don’t forget to like and follow them on facebook and follow @ngfarmmarket on instagram.

Every Day is Earth Day at the Market

Eat Local (2018_01_29 20_48_36 UTC)

We missed getting this post up in time for Earth Day, but then we think Earth Day should be every day, so that makes us right on time!

We all want to be environmentally friendly, but we also know that there are challenges. We are sharing this post with you to show how the Market can play a role in your environmental goals.

DID YOU KNOW?

Recently, the NGFM made a policy to eliminate styrofoam take out containers? This is not as easy as it sounds, there are a few reasons why a vendor can’t just switch overnight. We want you to know that we are trying and so are our vendors. Our vendors take pride in what they offer you. They want you to have the best quality product but they also realize that many patrons are budget conscious. Switching to environmentally sound containers can be cost prohibitive. Compostable containers can add up to $1 or more per piece depending on material costs and shipping. While some guests can easily and happily absorb this increase, there are other patrons that may find this difficult. Then there’s the matter of finding a container that will hold up to the food that gets placed in them. Many of our vendors offer liquid or “saucy” foods and we know you would like to not have leaks. We have given our vendors some time to adjust but by the end of May you will see that most of them will have switched over to something more environmentally friendly.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

BRING YOUR OWN

You can help! Bring in your own containers, cutlery and coffee mugs from home. Keep a set in the car in one of your reusable bags in case you make an unexpected trip in. That way, you’re always prepared! Our vendors will happily fill your own reusable dishes. This will help lessen the amount of overall trash that makes its way into the landfill.

BUY RE-USABLE ITEMS

We have a number of environmentally friendly items that are available for purchase from the Market. Better yet, they are locally made, which in itself lowers your carbon footprint. More on that later.

REUSABLE BAGS

We have a number of reusable shopping bags at the Market available from various vendors at various price points They are made from durable materials and will last you a long time and they are also fashionable and attractive, making them perfect for a multitude of uses. Here are just a few examples:

PRODUCE BAGS

We are thrilled to share with you for the very first time, these amazing produce bags from Quilted Chaos. Made from a breathable poly mesh, these will hold your produce and make it easy to transport. Charlotte will have these available in two sizes, purchase in a set or on their own and reuse! Fully machine washable.

image1 (1)

PLASTIC WRAP ALTERNATIVE

We are happy to welcome a new vendor to the Market this season! Beezy Wraps is a plastic wrap alternative. Made from cotton cloth, honey and tree resin, these wraps can be used on just about anything! If they get a little soiled, just give them a rinse under cold water and you can continue to use them. Unlike plastic wrap, when they reach the end of their long life cycle, these will completely break down.

These items are just the start! Did you know that Lismore Sheep Farm carries wool dryer balls and pillows filled with wool? Completely natural filling that will break down after its lifespan and more hygienic too. The Natural Edge has laundry alternatives and there are many natural soaps and more! There are lots of environmentally better choices to be found at the Market to help reduce waste and environmental impact.

SHOP AT THE MARKET

The single biggest thing you can do to make a positive impact on the environment is to shop at the Market. And if you are visiting somewhere else, visit their Farmers Market. SHOP LOCAL!

How does simply shopping at the Market help the environment?

Well, let us tell you!

All the products at the Market are locally grown or made. All the produce, honey, eggs, meats and lobster are grown, raised and fished locally. Items are not shipped from overseas or trucked across the country, they are grown or made right here! That means a reduction in your carbon footprint.

local
A photo used when speaking at a local school. Yes, we do speaking engagements as well! We love to talk about all things local and how it makes a difference!

As you can see illustrated in the diagram I used above, there are many more steps used when purchasing a product that is not locally produced. There is more packaging, much of the food that travels is processed in one form or another to keep it fresh at the least, then there’s the increased distribution, more money spent on marketing signage etc before it reaches your table. There is increased waste created by the additional packaging, some of which cannot be recycled. And your product will be older by the time it reaches your table…in Nova Scotia, your non-locally produced food travels on average more than 4,000 km and yes, that includes the new online “farm fresh” home delivery meal programs.

When you purchase locally made products, it comes straight from the farm to Market and travels less than 100km. There is less packaging and sometimes no packaging, especially if you use one of the options available at the Market above. There is very little signage and if there is waste, most of it can be reused, recycled or composted and then that compost can be reused in the farm or your own garden. The bonus is that most of your food is picked and makes it to your table in less than 24 hrs. Many of your farmers are harvesting on Friday or even Saturday morning before market starts.

The more you can grow yourself or source from your community, the better it is environmentally and economically for the community. If you can’t get it at the Market, then buy as close to home as possible. Start at the Market, if you can’t get it there, move to products produced provincially, work your way out.

Eat seasonally when possible. Eat more of the things you can find in season instead of purchasing imported food. Preserve. Buy at the the Market in season or grow your own, then can, freeze or dehydrate. Eating seasonally and preserving are things our ancestors did before there was such a thing as national transport. Families each grew and raised what they could and then shared the bounty with the rest of the community. If they couldn’t grow or raise it, clearly they didn’t eat it.

Eating Local
From Visually

So you see, there are many ways that you can help at the environment, just by being prepared and taking a couple of extra steps. The bonus is that when you shop local your money stays in your community, helps entrepreneurs and fosters local economic development and growth. If you don’t support your local producers, they will disappear!

Below is video, it’s American, but the sentiment is the same.