Understanding Farmers Market Regulations

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

This past Saturday a panel of experts gathered at Crabtree Farms to discuss Farmers Market regulations in Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee. The panel discussed different rules and regulations in each state, and answered questions about everything from what is considered a “prepared” food item, to proper labeling, and to best practices for vendors carrying their products across state lines.

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Sustainability-its a field day

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Sustainability. It’s one of those words that is tossed around a lot, but what does it actually mean to be sustainable? The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines it in this way: “Sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment. Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic and other requirements of present and future generations. Sustainability is important to making sure that we have and will continue to have, the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment.(1)"

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The Closest Food Source: Your Backyard

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Growing your own food takes time and effort. It is something that many people dream about doing, but it is a dream that does not always come to fruition. Schedules get in the way. Or space. Or responsibilities. What most people don’t realize is that the uncultivated world around them provides a free and tasty source of nutritious plants that, with the help of a handy guide book, can be easily found right in their own backyards.

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Time to slow down

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The past few months have been busy with getting gardens ready to plant. Now that it is summertime, this sense of urgency remains. Many of us farmers and gardeners are so used to the business of tending our gardens or fields that we forget to rest. The summer patterns of the sun and the solstice that make our days stretch even longer also make us feel like we can squeeze more work in, and need to. Something we can learn from our plants this summer, however, is the importance of pausing for a break.

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Summer Mint Salad

Monday, June 22, 2015

Summertime is an easy eating time, with large quantities and astounding varieties of fresh veggies available wherever you turn. Making meals to feed many mouths seems less stressful, as many seasonal vegetables can be eaten raw or tossed in a quick and easy salad. Tomatoes and cucumbers are piling up this week at area farm stands and farmer’s markets. These delicious veggies are versatile, eaten in everything from rich sauces to simple slices with only a sprinkling of salt. An herb that is used less often in many recipes around here, but that is just as available this time of year, is mint.

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Tis the Season

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Many of us have been anxiously ticking off the days until the juice of that first ripe berry fills our mouth. The time has come! Across the southeast, bushes are beginning to sag with the weight of plump blue and black berries just waiting to be picked. As farm stands begin to fill up with the season’s first pints, farms, too, are throwing open their gates for the U-Pick season. Are you looking for cheap summer fun with the family? Grab a bucket and some sunscreen and bring the kids along for a day at a local farm! Before you know it, your pails (and bellies!) will be full of sun-warmed berries at the end of an afternoon that is fun for everyone.

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Home Composting

Monday, June 08, 2015


Summer in the South brings an overflow of many kinds of fresh fruits and veggies in home gardens and farmers market stands alike. Chances are, if you cook at home with this abundant produce, mountains of vegetable scraps, like carrot tops, tomato heels, and pepper stems, begin to pile up.  An easy solution to ensure these nutrient-rich leftovers don’t go to waste is composting.

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Recipes to Stretch Your Local Food Budget

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Folks don’t always equate buying local with being easy on the wallet. Fresher, safer, fairer, and tastier, sure, but not necessarily budget friendly.

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Local Food on a Budget

Monday, May 18, 2015

Grow Chattanooga is offering “Buying Local on a Budget,” a class to challenge anyone who believes that locally grown or raised foods are too expensive, this Friday, May 22 from 6-7:30pm. The class costs $10, and participants will learn tips and tricks for stretching your food dollar, compare the cost of convenience foods to home-cooked meals, and sample and take home recipes for easy-to-make, cost saving dishes that feature delicious local foods.

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