Local Produce

Local Produce

by:  Betsy Peirce, Produce Manager

For years I have been grappling with how Oneota Community Co-op fits into our shoppers’ minds when it comes to being a local outlet for farmers to sell their produce and consumers to buy it. Certainly we are not literally a farmers market, and we are not attempting to be.

What Oneota Community Food Co-op can do very well is support our local farmers as best we can. For us that means we have a personal relationship with our growers and we buy nearly every item they have available to sell us. We also mark it up less than all our other produce, making it possible for them to be paid a higher sum for their goods.

Recently I came across a great quote that brought it home to me. “In order for small family farms to survive and thrive they need you to support them in all three of their markets:

1. Through CSA’s (Community Supported Agriculture= buy a share in exchange for a semi-regular delivery of produce) Rock Spring Farm’s CSA drop point is Oneota!

2. Through Retail Outlets- like ONEOTA!

3. Through Farmers markets- direct to the consumer.”

Wow! A revolutionary thought- they need all three to survive?  So, when you are buying local produce from Oneota Co-op you are helping us to keep supporting our local farmers on a daily basis, not just twice a week at farmers market or once a week for your CSA share delivery. We and our local growers thank you!

Looking forward to Autumn? Here are some local fall produce treats coming up, or are already here! (BTW: expect delays on apples and pears- it’s been cold!)

• Peake Orchard Apples from Waukon: Honeycrisp, Cortland, Haralson, Regent, Gold Delicious and Enterprise

• Brian and Kelly Nordschow: Sommerset Grapes- seedless! These grapes are so wonderful. Kids especially will love their tiny size.

• Sliwa Meadow Farm: Organic Apples and Pears.

• Countryside Orchard Apples- all unsprayed. Look for Priscilla, Liberty, and more!

• Plus: Melons and Raspberries, Edamame (edible soybeans- in the pod- yum!), tomatoes and more sweet corn.