Westminster Farmers' Market

  (Westminster, Massachusetts)
Bringing you local food, friends and fun.
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Westminster Farmers' Market Report for 03-26-10

Westminster Farmers’ Market Report from Maple Heights Farm

Don’t Miss This Incredible Opportunity to Vote for Healthy Food!

Mass Local food orders are now open and they will be closing on March 29th. The next delivery day is April 2nd with pickups in Westminster, Holden, Sterling and Berlin.

Voting by Choice, Your Vote Counts at the Grocery Store…

So, most of us want better food. Better quality, better taste, better nutrition. It all seems like David and Goliath sometimes as we are just one person, one family, one community and cannot be heard, right? While this true at some level and can be very overwhelming, it is not exactly the whole story. The rest of the story is this: food producers produce what you will buy. That’s it. If you won’t buy it, they won’t produce it. You can make a statement every time you shop. We saw this very clearly when Monsanto stopped producing rBGH (genetically modified growth hormone) because you voted for milk from cows that didn’t receive it (note that another company still produces it, but many dairies have stopped using it). Sure, it took a while, but look how far we have come!

When you select apples and pears from a local orchard (which, because of proper storage, are still in their prime this time of year) you are making a statement that you do not accept the mushy, flavorless apples being shipped in from half-way around the world.

When you seek out locally produced Maple Syrup (there is plenty around this time of year, see www.WachusettLocal.com) you are helping our local economy and getting a local product that is a symbol of our region.

And when you vote for no corn syrup by choosing Pepsi Throwback, Mountain Dew Throwback or Gatorade G2, you make an incredibly strong statement as these products have been reformulated to contain no corn syrup. Note that I DO NOT advocate drinking soda. I don’t drink soda, or Gatorade, but I just may go out and buy a case or two just to make sure my vote for no corn syrup is counted! Now, two things are at work here. First: your vote is going to tell Coca-Cola and all the other soft drink makers that it matters to you, and hopefully they will eliminate corn syrup too, even if only just to keep their market-share. Second: A large advertising campaign is being aimed at you (yes, that is true) to convince you that corn-syrup is fine. Now, I don’t know much, but I know enough to confidently tell you that by my interpretation of the definition of food (should I have to interpret a definition?), CORN SYRUP IS NOT FOOD.

There are other ways you can vote for a better food system:

·        Vote for the healthier choice whenever a choice has to be made. There may initially be a small financial hit, but that can be deceptive. The healthier option is likely to be cheaper over your lifetime.

·        Select a chemical that you vote to eliminate from your diet, and never buy it again.

·        Vote for whole foods that you take home and prepare yourself.

·        Vote for fresh fish that has been caught in the wild, not grain fed, farmed fish. It may not surprise you to know that corn is not fish food. Think about it. Corn field. Ocean. Not fish food!

·        Vote for naturally and humanly raised animal products including meat and eggs. Organic eggs from confined hens fed high omega-3 diets are not better than eggs from non-organic, free-range hens that get sunlight, grass and a natural diet.

Your Vote Counts and it is easy to cast! Vote wisely and vote often.

I love my soap…

Soap is a funny thing. You have your brand and that is that. The cashmere bouquet in the hotel rooms is just never good enough. For a long time, I have been a dial and/or dove person. It was the smell of clean to me. But for over a year I have been using Hames and Axle goat milk soaps and I can never go back. Dial doesn’t smell clean to me anymore. It smells unnatural.

I wonder what ever distanced us from the daily use of handmade soaps which have far better qualities than anything I have found in the health and beauty aids aisle. I remember these handmade soaps of my childhood, not because we actually used them, but because my mother always kept a small decorative bar in our drawers to keep our clothes smelling fresh, isn’t that nice??.

Dial contains this long list of ingredients: Active Ingredient: Triclocarban Inactive Ingredients: soap (sodium cocoate*, sodium palm kernelate*, sodium palmate*, sodium tallowate*), water, talc, coconut acid*, palm acid*, tallow acid*, palm kernel acid*, peg-6 methyl ether, fragrance, glycerin, sorbitol, sodium chloride, pentasodium pentetate, tetrasodium etidronate, yellow 5, yellow 8, red 4

Hames and Axle soap contains: Contains milk, vegetable, olive, safflower and canola oils, along with saponified sodium hydroxide (lye.) and essential oils.

Personally, I am more comfortable the second list of ingredients. How does it happen that, for my whole life, I snub a high quality, healthy item for a product that does not really resemble anything natural? Are advertisements so powerful and my mind so weak that I lose my sensibility and succumb to a message that Dial smells clean and has a better lather? Or have I just smelled Dial for so long that I made my own association that that is the smell of clean? It no longer smells clean to me. I like the beneficial ingredients that I can get in my handmade soap (tea tree oil being one of them).

As for the little decorative bars that were left in the clothing drawers of my childhood, I never cared at the time, but wasn’t that a great idea??? Thanks Mom, and Note to Pat: For my next order of soap, could I have some of it cut into several smaller pieces?

Visit our Westminster Farmers’ Market website…

The Westminster Farmers’ Market website is being updated with vendors for the 2010 season. Visit for ideas on how you can help the farmers’ market, participate as a vendor, or get information on our schedule for the season. Visit us at www.WestminsterFarmersMarket.com.

Maple Heights Farm…

At Maple Heights Farm, we are well stocked with meat. Our products are available either through Mass Local Food (I’ve finally listed my crackers for those that have been waiting) or by pre-ordering by email. You can see our complete inventory on our website.

Kerrie Hertel

MapleHeightsFarm@verizon.net

www.MapleHeightsFarm.com

www.WestminsterFarmersMarket.com

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