By Felix Teitelbaum,GreenLeaf Editor
You may have sometimes wondered at the selection of organic apples at GreenStar and why so many of them come from so far away. The fact is, in 2001, of the 12,189 acres of certified organic apples grown in this country, fully 95% were grown west of the Rockies. Although NY is well known for its delicious apples, organic growers in NY, and all over the Northeast, face many more challenges than their western counterparts.
By Marielle Macher
Our small group of Cornell Farmworker Program interns stood outside the home of some New York State farmworkers to whom we had been asked to provide English lessons; we were unsure what to think. While we had already been to many farmworker homes over the course of the summer, this one was different. From the outside, the home seemed abandoned. There were plastic bags where there should have been windows, the porch had begun to collapse and the roof seemed in need of substantial repair. Inside, the furniture was sparse and falling apart, the walls were largely unpainted and the ceiling beams were exposed. However, despite these poor living conditions, the workers welcomed us into their home with incredible enthusiasm and hospitality. After we provided the workers with an English lesson, they taught us about life in Guatemala and their experiences in the United States.
While the conditions of this home were not necessarily typical of farmworker housing in general, this home nevertheless reflects the invisibility and isolation of farmworkers in our state, and the sometimes overlooked issues of injustice within our local food system.
By Felix Teitelbaum, GreenLeaf Editor
It helps to be isolated from other potato production, says Andy Leed of Starflower Farm as he unearths a few Dark Red Norlandsone of the 36 varieties of potatoes he grows that shoppers can expect to find soon at GreenStar.
Theres no question about it, the farm is isolated. And very quiet.
When he hurls an overgrown tuber, a doe and fawn scamper off into the neighboring woods; newts creep underfoot; few cars pass.
The farm, in the hills outside of Candor, NY, grows potatoes for both seed and table.
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New in Produce
|Thanks, Life is Good|
Giving thanks doesn't end in November. The local bounty continues with root veggies, apples, cider, and trees.
This month I intended loquacious prose built upon the ever-busy world, intertwined with our local experience of cold, winter, snow, and beauty, but it just didn't sit. It seems like every month in this space I ask that we enjoy and respect our liberties and freedoms, spiritual, emotional, physical, or otherwise. It doesn't change from month to month or even day to day — every minute, every second is important to look upon and be thankful for and reflect and exist in. During the holiday months, it's especially important to realize how we act and who we are, because the consumption of product can be blinding and unrelenting. I'm thankful for this region, its people, its farms, and our Co-op: this month that means Remembrance Farm's rainbow carrots, Stick and Stone's mixed root vegetables, The Good Life Farm's bagged mixed winter greens, Black Diamond's brilliant heirloom apples, and Littletree's delicious cider. And, holiday trees! I am thankful.