Saturday, March 27, 2010

Farmers Markets, eggs and The Common Market

Well, we've been trying to figure out where our retail outlets should be this summer and a plan has slowly come into view for 2010.

As it stands, we will be attending two markets this year, both on Saturday morning:

Fresh Farm Bethesda Market
June 19 - Oct 30, Saturdays, 9-1:00.
Norfolk Ave. at Veteran's Park.

Burleith/Glover Park Market,
May 8th - Oct 30th. Saturdays, 9-1:00.
Wisconsin at 34th Street, NW (across from the 'social Safeway')
Hardy Middle School parking lot.

(We are sad to be leaving our spot on Wednesday's in Rose Park:(

Thanks to the new program launched by the Maryland Dep't of Agriculture, we will be able to legally sell farm-fresh poultry and rabbit at the Bethesda Market.

We have ordered our broiler chicks and will be pasturing them starting in April for 2 batches of chicken sales this summer!

There is some hope that the USDA may change rules in place that currently only allow the sale of meat crossing state lines to come from a USDA-inspected abbatoir (meat processor).

If the new rules are passed, they may allow state-inspected facilities that meet the same standards as USDA-inspected facilities to be sold across state lines (think Maryland to D.C. farmers' markets).

As a farmer, I can attest that the presence of state, USDA or any other kind of certification really does not mean that much in terms of food safety.

For example, there have been several closures of large kosher USDA-inspected processing centers in the midwest in the past several years for serious infractions. These were situations where the kosher certifier may have looked the other way and allowed things to pass that were SO BAD that even the USDA intervened.

In the end, knowing who raises your food, under what conditions, and trusting in your farmer to work with reputable and humane butchers is the BEST way to be confident in the meat you are getting.

We also hope to supply more of our products to The Common Market ( a wonderful food COOP in Frederick and our grocer of choice in Frederick) and VOLT Restaurant (also in Frederick)

We are excited to see one more barrier to direct-to-consumer sales fall!

See you at the markets!


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