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Just Local Foods- Reconnecting the Community

Written By: Jennifer Buhler  |  Posted: Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

             Growing up in a family heavily involved in farming and farmers, I've seen many farms go to one specialty crop or animal or simply go out of business.  The motto for farming has been "get big or get out!"  Is this inevitable?  Is it a sign of progress?  What other choice does the farmer have?  This very dilemma is the motivation behind just local foods- to give small farms a chance to market their foods, and make a decent living. 

            The idea started back when dairy farmers Troy and Barb DeRosier wanted to turn their conventional farm into a grass-fed organic dairy and process the milk themselves to sell directly to their customers.  They primarily wanted a healthier product for their own family but they also wanted to provide superior quality milk to their community and be able to provide a substantial living for their family.  The dairy was successful but they wanted to find more ways to bring customers to their on- farm store so they decided to carry bananas.  Then they thought that maybe someone in the community could make artisan breads.   The idea kept growing until it became what worker Nik Novak called "a hybrid convenience store/farmers market".  As the store grew, many joined the movement and organized into a worker owned business.

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