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June 5, 2014

It is an exciting time on the farm. Harvest season is beginning in earnest. Our CSA program starts next week. We have been busy planting and the fields are starting to green up. The weather is absolutely amazing. Our crew is in place. It’s all coming together.

We know that many of us are interested in food and food issues. It’s probably the reason you signed up for this newsletter. Me? Of course. I read articles all of the time on growing food, on eating food, and on selling food. An article came across my screen the other day, as a matter of fact, that I wanted to talk about today.

It was a story on how supermarkets use marketing tricks to get their customers to spend more money. The author talked about how the stores use colors and smells to entice people. They talked about placing cartoon characters at a lower level to draw kids in, who then harangue their parents into buying junk cereals. The stores manipulate space, by putting fresh flowers and baked goods near the entryway for instance, to get you to make impulse purchases.They know you typically travel counter-clockwise through the store. They know that end-of-aisle displays make up over 30% of sales. They play slow music so you’ll move slower and spend more time in the store – which means you’ll buy more things. You can read the full story here:

Is that the business model you want to support? A business model that tricks its families into buying stuff they don’t need? A business model that entices children into buying as much sugar as possible? A business model that fights you in the tough decisions you are trying to make for your family? A business model that cares little except for getting as much of your money as possible? I don’t think so.

It’s one of the main reasons that buying local has caught fire lately. You can talk to the owner. You can ask questions (ever ask the grocer shelf stocker about the farm where the lettuce came from?). You can make special orders. Your dollars remain in the community.  You build neighborhoods. You support local jobs and local families.

Thank you for buying local. We’re taking back the food system in this country, piece by piece. It happens because folks pay attention and use their wallets to vote. It happens because caring folks make decisions that reflect their values. It happens one day at a time.

Christina and I and the whole crew hope you have a wonderful, not-too-exciting but still exhilarating week.