Friday, April 28, 2017

Do you want to buy from corporations or neighbors?

Where you buy your food matters. Twenty years ago, if you bought organic, you were buying from family operators. Today, organic has gone corporate. Organic retailers and manufacturers are publically traded and stock market traders want their financial return.

In the shadow of well-known organic brands owned by multinational behemoths like General Mills and ConAgra stands a thin phalanx of local farms building an alternative supply chain. When you choose to buy from these families and neighbors, you feed not just your stomach but really the businesses which will grow around you. It's not only money in the pocket of the farmer himself, but how those dollars flow to other local farmers and small businesses in your backyard. 
Hugh Dufner, Hugh's Gardens
A simple example is my potato seed. Last week I drove to Halstad Minnesota to pick up 500 lbs of seed potatoes from Hugh Dufner of Hugh's Gardens. Hugh has worked the trenches of organic production and marketing for a long time, and, like many I've known in organic farming, he is more motivated by healthy foods and farming than a dream of some potato empire.

When I visited his warehouse, I was impressed by the activity. Five people were employed working the wash and packing line, a real buzz of activity in a seemingly sleepy town.   

An even more inspiring part of Hugh's story is how he is actively transitioning his business. Instead of liquidating or selling out to some of the many new large operators jumping into the organic market, he instead is training in two young farm operators to take over. They are buying a home and moving up to Halstad. This is what a true organic food movement looks like. We not only grow without pesticides, but we deliver on the promise of organics to contribute to the wealth of rural communities. 

Too often as corporations enter into organic food, they employ their same old tried and true tactics: drive down price by squeezing suppliers and cutting labor and wages. Their replacement of family-based businesses may save you 10 cents on your next food purchase, but I assure you that your rural communities becomes all the poorer for it. Instead, please seek out local producers like ourselves who are committed a local food system that benefits our Main Streets, not Wall Street.  

Fergus dropsite is filled, but we still have room in Pelican Rapids, Detroit Lakes, and Perham on Friday afternoon. See http://www.lidafarm.com/p/2012-csa-information.html or contact lidafarmer@gmail.com for details.  


Sunday, February 05, 2017

Taking on Memberships for 2017

Crossing over the  line into February, we're just weeks away from starting summer transplants like peppers and tomatoes.  Yes, summer will come sooner than you think!  
Now is the time to make plans for your summer produce needs.  We offer two kinds of CSA shares: a full share where you receive a 3/4 bushel box of what's in season every week for 16 weeks and an every-other-week share where you receive a box, well, every other week over the same time.  




Full-Weekly Share (3/4 bushel box each week, 16 boxes):
  • Pick up at drop site or farm - $495

Every-other-week Share (3/4 bushel box every other week, 8 boxes):

  • Pick up at drop site or farm - $255
DROP SITE LOCATIONS
1.     MANNA Food Co-op in Detroit Lakes (Fridays)


2.     Clean Plate Grocery in Perham (Fridays)

3.     
Riverview Place  in Pelican Rapids (Fridays)

4.     Keller Williams Realty in Fergus Falls (Tuesdays)

5.     On site at Lida Farm (Fridays)

HOW TO SIGN UP
Please fill our our 2017 order form below to join for the year.  We ask for half the payment when you sign up with the remainder due half way through the summer.