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POWDRELL

Here's To Our Local Farmers
updated: Feb 09, 2013, 1:00 PM

By David Powdrell

So…..here's the deal. A few months ago I photographed some vibrant colors of the fruits and vegetables of the Carpinteria Farmers Market; fun combinations of yellows, oranges and reds of bell peppers and beets. Although common place before the Industrial Age, farmers markets dwindled in popularity but are making a sweet comeback of late.

A couple of comments to that article recommended I take some photos of the people selling their product at the farmers markets, many of whom are local farmers.

Then, at last weekend's Superbowl, my favorite ad was the late Paul Harvey poetically talking about the hard working farmers. To paraphrase, "And on the 8th day God looked down on his planned paradise and said "I need a caretaker." So God made a farmer. God said I need somebody to get up before dawn and milk cows and work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper and then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board. So God made a farmer. God said, "I need somebody strong enough to clear trees, heave bails and yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink combed pullets…and who will stop his mower for an hour to mend the broken leg of a meadow lark". So God made a farmer. It had to be somebody who'd plow deep and straight...and not cut corners. Somebody to seed and weed, feed and breed…and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk. So God made a farmer."

Here's to our local farmers.

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Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 372609 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-09 01:34 PM

While I too loved the Paul Harvey poem I have to take issue with "God made a farmer". 67% of the jobs attributed to the 1 farmer is actually done by the farmer's wife! Just sayin'.

 

 COMMENT 372616P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-09 01:48 PM

I know a couple of the local farmer's market farmers, and they often hire other to work the booths for them. I'm pretty sure one of your photos is of a farmer's market worker who isn't an actual farmer. They're still great photos of interesting people. I'm just questioning the identification of the subjects as actual farmers.

 

 COMMENT 372617 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-09 01:50 PM

David,
Thank you so much for sharing those beautiful thoughts and the pictures of our own wonderful, hardworking farmers.

God bless all farmers and their wives and children and thank you all for all your hard work and sacrifices that allow us to enjoy those beautiful fruits and vegies!

 

 YIN YANG agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-09 02:07 PM

I recognize the woman in the fourth picture down and haven't shopped at that market in 10 years! Nice, really nice, Dave.

 

 YIN YANG agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-09 02:09 PM

I mean "David"
All I can say is that these people are not corporate agribusiness. http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/e1abab3c2b/god-made-a-factory-farmer

 

 COMMENT 372781P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-10 06:55 AM

I love the Farmer's Market and have been going every Saturday for years (if I miss that one, I go to the one near Costco on Sunday) and get all my produce there. I have been curious, though, about the fact that most members of their board don't live in Santa Barbara County. I find that odd and wonder how that decision came about because one would think the Farmers would want to be represented by people living in the same county as the growers. Any body out there know the reason this is the fact and how can we in SB change the policy or practice to get the Board members to be SB residents?

 

 FLICKA agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-10 07:45 AM

The Board of directors has out-of-county members because many of the farm stands are from agribusiness operations not located in our county. They hire people to run their stands. The orginal idea was to have local farmers sell to local people, you could talk to them about their farms and products. I know two local couples with small organic farms who can't get into the market; one is allowed in but not on a permnent basis, the other they won't allow to sell at all. Like the rest of our country, corporations rule! And don't think for a minute they sell organic fruit and vegetables. Great pictures, David.

 

 COMMENT 372809 agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-10 08:54 AM

Wonderful and laudable project--it is unfortunate that no names were given to go with the faces. Perhaps you are considering expanding this article with a little bit of information on the various growers and farmers. Thank you for a warm, human story.

 

 COMMENT 372863P agree helpful negative off topic

2013-02-10 12:35 PM

FLICKA. Thanks for relating the reality of all this. I looked at the pics and thought to myself: "Those aren't the farmers, those are the hired hands."

Plus, I am really leery of the "organic" labeling at our local Farmer's marts. People should always ask. Many times the answer is: "We don't spray." Yes. But what goes into the soil?

Just to illustrate: I discovered I can eat only organically grown strawberries. If the berries "aren't sprayed" but have nasty soil amendments added------I eat one of these fruits and break out in hives! And I am not allergic to anything else, so far as I know. Caveat emptor.

 

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