The co-op through which I sell eggs - the Bountiful Sprout - held a vendor/member/advertising "meet and greet" at our local community center today. There was a free showing of the documentary "Food Fight", live music, face-painting, and hands-on crafts for the kids. The vendors ranged from bakers to herbalists to ranchers to veggie farmers, and members got to meet and talk to the vendors more in-depth about their products and philosophies.
I provided examples of the differences between commercial, caged chicken eggs and pasture-raised chicken eggs. "City" folks and teens were amazed at the difference in yolk color, and most had never seen a goose egg before . "Old"-timers told funny stories about being raised around chickens and geese. Folks who know me, know that I'm pretty shy and don't talk about myself that much (well, except on this blog), but I feel so passionate about local food systems - and my girls, of course! - that I about talked everyone's ear off.
Fell into a discussion with one of the co-op's board members, who is putting together a town-focused social network where folks can skill share and call out for assistance. We talked about how many are craving a sense of community and connection, and that this can be one way of creating a more cohesive community. Especially if the economy continues to tank.
I was thrilled to talk more with local producers of pasture-raised pork and beef, and made plans to budget money for shares in the upcoming harvest.
Meeting with everyone, making presentations, and seeing people's excitement in what we're doing with the co-op has left me feeling re-energized and re-motivated to push forward on developing our orchard. There's a huge need for a larger variety of local, organic fruits and nuts. Our town also has a small food bank, and it'd be great to have something to give every season. I may even set up a gleaning opportunity if we have enough trees/produce to do so.
One thing I forgot to bring - snacks and drinks. I started to have a sugar crash, and ended up eating a coconut/date macaroon from the vendor next to me, and drinking a cup of organic coffee from the vendor across the way. This means Spouse gets to watch me bounce off the walls for the rest of tonight, lucky guy! ("no, not really" I'm sure he'd say) Think I better find a project to pour this energy into while it lasts.