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Sold! to Save the Farm - WSJ Friday August 29, 2003

  • Subject: [cg] Sold! to Save the Farm - WSJ Friday August 29, 2003
  • From: Adam36055@aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2003 13:57:14 EDT


An amazing article in today's ( Friday, August 29, 2003) Wall Street Journal. An excerpt below:

"Sold! to Save the Farm: Many Amish Make Ends Meet Selling Produce at Auction; New Tactic to Keep Old Ways

By Elizabeth Weinstein

Rockville, Ind.

A SEA OF STRAW hats bobs up and down under a hot pavillion here as buyers get a closer look at the bins of watermelons and carts of fuzzy peaches.  Going once...going twice...and sold by a rapid-fire auctioneer.  An opening price for bags of sweet corn rings out and buyers, representing produce stands, restaurants and grocery stores yell "yo!" or nod their heads.

This is Indiana's newest wholesale-produce auction, one of about 10 run by the Amish and Mennonite sects that have sprouted up throughout the the Midwest and the East Caost in the past year, and one of about 40 nationwide.  The Amish growers here hope auction crops make up for falling prices in their more tradional crops.  The sect's members, who believe in self-reliance, don't accept the farm subsidies amny of their more modern, rural neighbors receive."

This is the way that the piece, "Sold! to Save the Farm" began in the "Marketplace" section of today's Wall Street Journal.  As it was NOT on the web, I input it and hope folks on this list can find a copy at their local newstands, public library or in the trash to read, because it's fascinating how some supermarkets are buying into this as a way of supporting regional businesses and while it is definately easier," says one produce shipper, to " pick up phone and buy 1,000 green peppers in less than 60 seconds or I can spend two days making the purchase at auction, [b]ut it's that homegrown look customers want.....Sometimes the extra repacking and cooling costs mean auction products are less profitable. But the trade-off is longtime relationships with local producers, a higher-quality product and happy customers."

It's an excellent article, and folks who run CSA's, locally run agriculture projects and urban farms should get copies of the full article with the legend "As seen in the Wall Street Journal" ( reprints are available from the WSJ") to share with local farmers, restaurateurs, supermarket produce managers and any decision maker who while they might not  be overly  impressed by written material produced by your group. but for whom  the cachet of WSJ opens doors.

A good article, and well worth the buck the WSJ costs.

Best wishes,
Adam Honigman
Clinton Community Garden

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