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Featured articles, updates and news from your Silver City Food Co-op.

Artisan Market 9/12

Find the Perfect Gift at the Silver City Food Co-op’s Local Indoor Artisan Market!
Support Your Friends and Neighbors, Saturday, September 12, from 9 am to 2 pm at 614
N. Bullard St.

After the Farmers Market, check out the Silver City Food Co-op’s Local Artisan Market,
Saturday, September 12, from 9 am to 2 pm at 614 N. Bullard St.  Locally created arts and crafts
will be available. Each artisan market has an eclectic selection of handcrafted work to make this
a monthly event you do not want to miss.

If you are a local artisan interested in selling your wares, please call Adrienne at 388-2343 or
email her at adrienne@silvercityfoodcoop.com.

Who Grew Your Carrot?

Knowing who grew and picked your lettuce, beets, and carrots is one of the positive aspects of buying from local farmers. And, of course, buying from these farmers keeps our food dollars in the area. It is wonderful to know we have a community that supports farmers, where farmers—who might be our neighbors and friends—can make a living like the rest of us. So let’s meet three of the local growers who provide produce to the Co-op

Doug Smith, Townside Farm.
Doug, with help from his wife Martha Everett, grows half an acre of vegetable crops seasonally on his four-and-ahalf- acre farm, located one mile north of Highway 180 on Little Walnut Road. The other fields are devoted to raising cover crops, pastured chickens, fruit trees, perennials, and his new project, an earthworks water catchment system.

Doug started the farm in 2009 with the property owner, Peter Day, but is now the sole owner of the business, while leasing the land from Peter. This joint plan was a great way to allow a farmer to start a business without having the large up-front expense of the land. Water rights are leased from the city to use with the property’s well and supplies a drip-irrigation system, although he also uses overhead sprinklers on his cover crops and on the vegetable crops when they’re small.

This year Doug is growing tomatoes, corn, summer and winter squash, peppers, beans, melons, and greens. Bunch cooking greens and bagged salad mix are the main vegetables he provides to the co-op. His thousand-square-foot greenhouse with solar radiant-floor heating allows him to grow these greens for the co-op all winter.

Doug believes in education through access; he likes that his farm is close to town and visible from the road. He enjoys visitors, but asks for people to call first. He also provides educational opportunities for schools and other community groups.

Eric Leahy, Gone Fishin’ Farm.
Eric owns land by the river at the north end of the valley in Gila, where he has been living and growing food with his partner, Ami, and two children, Quinn and Kenya, for 15 years. He cultivates one acre, which this year is mainly planted in garlic and pasture. Over the years Eric has changed from planting his crops in the field to nurturing the plants in large hoop houses covered in white plastic with some screening on the ends. The white plastic provides substantial shade to the crops, which helps cut the intensity of our New Mexico sun, and hoop house keeps the enclosed area free from ravenous bugs. The results are lush cooking greens, salad greens, beets, and carrots. This year, with the help of grant funds, Eric will put up two more hoop houses so he can vastly increase his production of greens, and co-op shoppers will reap the benefit. In addition to the crops mentioned above, Eric grows a large garlic crop that he sells to the coop, plus tomatoes, peppers, and medicinal herbs for the Farmers’ Market.

Beekeeping has been one of his passions in recent years. He has 20 hives and is increasing the number of bee colonies by providing a hive-removal service for people who find bees living in their walls or attic. He plants a variety of nectar plants to keep his bees happy and healthy. He says the demand for local honey is very high.

Kyle Skaggs, Frisco Farm.
Kyle and his partner Meggie Dexter cultivate about five acres of their twelve acre farm on the San Francisco River in Pleasanton. He has been growing food for the past seven years, focusing on root crops—garlic, beets, carrots, potatoes, and turnips—but also planting summer and winter squash, cucumbers, and a variety of other crops. His entire farm is irrigated from the river through ditch systems and row flooding; his greens use river water, too, but through a sprinkler system. Though he starts his seeds in a small greenhouse, he grows all his crops out in the fields. With his five acres he supplies produce to the co-op, wholesales produce elsewhere in the state, and sells at the farmers market.

Kyle uses draft horses to work the fields. With equipment adapted for his needs, he and his horses plow, disc, furrow, cultivate, mow, and turn the soil for harvesting. He walks behind the horsedrawn plow and cultivator but sits on the other pieces of equipment. Using the horses allows him to efficiently work his five acres, besides providing him with a great sense of satisfaction and lots of fun.

Kyle and Meggie’s six-month-old son, Ketch, spends a lot of time in the fields but is not quite ready to work in them.
* * *
All three farmers have chosen this work because they love the lifestyle farming provides—being out in nature, being self-employed, being part of the cycles of the land and the seasons, and providing healthy food for others. The main challenge they experience is also a shared one. While they all use extra help prepping vegetables to take to the market (usually trading the labor for food), none hire regular workers because paying a reasonable wage would cut too much into their own income. One of the three also mentioned the financial challenge of obtaining capital for bigger projects.

Next time you pick up local produce at the Co-op, think about the local farmers who helped grow the nutritious and delicious food you are about to eat.


–Susan Van Auken

what’s new@our co-op?


We now carry Rainbow Quinoa in our Bulk Department!
Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is a grain-like food that is a complete protein; it’s a source of all nine essential amino acids. This is not the case for most plant-based foods. Usually you would need to combine two foods—rice and beans, for instance—in order to make up a complete protein, but quinoa does this on its own. Rainbow quinoa is a mix of white (also called plain or ivory), red (which holds its shape and adds color and texture), and black (sweet and earthy) quinoa. Try rainbow quinoa hot as a replacement for rice or other grains, or as a base for cold salads!

Spice Blends from The Silk Road: A Global Tasting Experience!
For the past 40 years, the Risho family has been serving global cuisine and perfecting internationally-inspired spice blends at their Silk Road Restaurant. Now, eight of those spice blends are available here at the Silver City Food Co-op! All natural spices are hand-roasted and ground in small batches, with no preservatives or additives, and vacuum-sealed to ensure intense flavor. Enjoy the fragrance and flavors of cuisine from Morocco, Egypt, Japan, India, Ethiopia, Persia, and China, right in your own kitchen. There is an easy 25-minute recipe on each spice blend tin! Use these spice blends to add flavor to dishes made with meat

Zoe’s Salami: Artisan-Style Charcuterie
The Co-op now carries Uncured Salami and Uncured Ghost Pepper Salami crafted in small batches by Zoe’s Meats. Our Dairy buyer, Becky Carr, says these products remind her of fragrant, flavorful “charcuterie” (the French term for cooked meats) she has tasted during her travels in Europe. Zoe’s salami contains no added nitrites or nitrates. The meats that go into these products are sourced from farmers who raise their animals on high-quality feed and little or no antibiotics and growth hormones. The ghost-pepper salami packs a savory punch, incorporating super-hot Indian red naga chilis.