Serving Up Vermont
In September, we celebrated National Honey Month, and we have a lot to thank our hard-working bees for. Much of our food system is dependent on the labor honey bees provide; as honey bees search for nectar for themselves, they also collect and transfer pollen as they move from plant to plant. This process of cross-pollination is critical for our food system, as it is what actually allows the plants (that we want to eat!) to reproduce. Human or technical replication of what the bees do for us naturally is not as efficient, labor-intensive, and very expensive.
Throughout the year, City Market staff members make the rounds to visit our local producers and get a behind the scenes look at their operations. With over 2,700 Local and Made in Vermont products, we have plenty of incredible vendors to choose from. This past week, a group of us visited Miskell’s Premium Organics in Charlotte and Besteyfield Farms at their new space in Hinesburg.
Last Saturday, a group of City Market’s trusty Member Workers headed down to the Intervale for a Crop Mob at Pitchfork Farm. This event was one of 102 events on 44 farms around Vermont as part of the Third Annual Open Farm Week. This weeklong celebration of food and farms began in 2015 as a collaborative effort among a number of members of the Vermont Farm to Plate Network.
Located off a dirt road in Fairfax, Vermont, Heike Meyer and her husband Jens run Bröt Bakery, a micro-bakery that specializes in organic, naturally leavened breads and pastries. With a custom wood-fired oven and a dedication to making hearty, delicious bread, Bröt Bakery is a favorite for City Market customers.
Here in Vermont, we’re often recognized for our thriving local food system and commitment to the farm and food economy.
Here at City Market, we work closely with the Intervale Center as one of our Community Outreach Partners. Each summer, we sponsor their weekly celebration of food, farms, and community: Summervale.
Every summer, City Market hosts farm tours open to community members where we visit local farms and learn about agriculture in our home state. In June, we visited Pine Island Community Farm and Riverberry Farm and earlier in July we visited Green Mountain Bee Farm. Farm tours are part of our summer education programming, where community members and visitors can sign up for a day of meeting farmers and learning about where our food comes from. It really makes the “know your farmer” effort easy—we bring you right to them!
June 21st marked this year’s summer solstice, and even if the season feels a bit delayed this year, the long sunny days are here to be enjoyed! With July 4th right around the corner and family barbeques galore, it’s time to slap on the bug spray, fire up the grill, and celebrate the bounty the season’s harvest has to offer.
Looking for some recipe inspiration? Here’s my recipe round-up to kick off the season right.
Make It On The Grill
No grill? No worries! There are many public spots with grills to use in Burlington like Oakledge Park or North Beach, just bring your own food and charcoal! For charcoal grills, we like to recommend using a chimney starter to get the grill hot quickly without any lighter fluid. Win-win! Check out these tasty recipes that you can make all summer long.
Did you know that you can find local juice with organically-grown fruits and veggies made-to-order every Wednesday in the City Market parking lot? Well, now you do! Every Wednesday from 10am-2pm through September, Mike Winters will be out front serving up delicious juice for our community. In addition to his weekly gigs here at City Market and at the Burlington Farmers’ Market on Saturdays, Mike manages a plot of land at the Intervale Center where the majority of the fruits and vegetables used in his juices are grown.
Got milk? We sure do here in Vermont. Despite challenges in the dairy industry in our state, milk generates more sales than any other Vermont agricultural product and it brings in $2.2 billion in economic activity to our state each year. Enjoy Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia, or Ploughgate Creamery cultured butter? Well then, you’ve got a dairy farmer to thank!