Strength in Numbers (of Conscious Shoppers)

With all the local marketplaces and events this time of year, those of us who are embedded in our community of local do-ers and movers don’t necessarily need an annual tradition boosted by a credit card company to remember the importance of supporting local economy. Still, Small Business Saturday is another one of those special days each year that we love, appreciate, and look forward to.

custom_social-post-1

According to the National Retail Federation, about 164 million consumers are expected to shop on Black Friday in 2017. For the seventh year, Small Business Saturday plans to redirect some of those shoppers to local businesses across the country rather than big-box retailers. For every $100 spent at a local business, $43 stays in local economy, whereas only $13 stays in local economy if spent at a non-locally-owned business.

Read the full story »

“Slow the Fork Down”

slow foodThe Phoenix Division of the Slow Food Movement is gaining traction in our community, where the focus is placed on local culinary heritage and social justice. The Slow Food Movement, globally and nationally, aims to deepen the public’s awareness surrounding our food systems and how they affect just about every aspect of our livelihood on this planet. A daunting task, surely, so let’s start with lunch.

Slow Food Phoenix’s most recent project is entitled “Feeding the Future,” during which attendees will sample diverse dishes made by a bold lineup of beloved chefs, including Charleen Badman of Scottsdale’s FnB and Eddie Hantas of East Valley favorite Hummus Xpress. There’s a twist to this sampling event, though: each chef’s budget will reflect the current National School Lunch Program (NSLP) budget, and will be served in the style of an American school lunch.

Read the full story »

new-why-fm-20172

Sip on this…

Screen Shot 2017-05-02 at 2.54.51 PM

 

Pour Jo Coffee makes a strong case for great coffee with delicious drinks and their friendly family-run business.  You may know the crew at Pour Jo Coffee for their truck, offering a full espresso bar along with hot and iced coffee and teas. However, do you know just how strong that drink is for the community?

 

Pour Jo Coffee exemplifies forward-thinking retailers who are increasingly keen to engage in true partnerships with their local suppliers.  Their truck and menu boasts a range of local purveyors you can’t resist.

 

You can find the coffee crew shopping around the Market first thing in the morning to grab fresh fruits, Absolutely Delightful honey or Iconic Co. flavors to spice up their drinks.  With coffee locally roasted from Provision Coffee, milk delivered from Danzeisen Dairy and tea blends from Maya Tea company you can be sure you’re enjoying a true local collaboration full of flavor and hard work!  Even their snack offerings come from local company Nut Sack.

 

Pour Jo has definitely proven they are committed to sourcing ingredients from other locals.  Even the plants featured on the truck come from ConCreate Cactus and their tunes to keep the energy up and the drinks flowing… well they blast those from Diamond Boxx Co speakers.

 

The economic tendrils of this movement reach deeper than anyone might imagine.  Read more about the impacts of building strong local food systems here. So the next time you are picking up your coffee on Saturday morning from Pour Jo, think of the blend of local entrepreneurship and community building that goes into each cup.

 

Pour Jo’s Local Purveyors:

Absolutely Delightful Honey
Concreate Cactus
Danzeisen Dairy
Diamond Boxx Co
Iconic Cocktail Co.
Maya Tea
Nut Sack
Provision Coffee

Double Up at the Market

Gather around SNAP recipients, you are not going to want to miss this.

A few months ago at the market we introduced Double Up Food Bucks, a federal program that allows a dollar-for-dollar match at participating farmers markets (up to ten dollars per week). Anyone utilizing SNAP benefits is eligible to receive twice as much healthy, Arizona grown produce through DUFB. Not only does this directly benefit food stamp recipients, but local farmers receive more customers, and the food dollars go back in to our local economy. Call it a win-win-win.

The process is simple. Shop with your EBT card at our market on Saturday’s and pay for your items at the Information Booth. In return, we will match however much you spend by giving you up to 10 tokens to use on fresh fruits and vegetables at the market. Use the tokens the same day or come back and use them next time; they don’t expire.

Have any further questions about this program? Come see us at the Information Booth where our volunteers can help you get started.  DUFB started in Michigan just five years ago and since then has benefited over 300,000 low income families and 1,000 local farmers. Help the program stick around by getting involved.

#PhxShopsLocal

Take the pledge this holiday season and let everyone know “Phoenix Shops Local”

phxshopslocal

Did you know.. The Open Air Market at the Phoenix Public Market is a program of Community Food Connections (CFC), a 501c3 non-profit organization. Our mission as a non-profit is to create a downtown community gathering place by supporting small farmers and businesses that strengthen sustainable food systems and produce healthy products for the local community.

Will you help support our mission by taking the pledge and showing the world that #PhxShopsLocal   From the ingredients to cook your holiday meals to the gifts you buy friends and family take the pledge to shop local!

Why Shop Local?

  1. Enrich Our Community: Nobody wants to live in a neighborhood that lacks a farmers market and small business culture.  With an every changing and growing downtown community, it is more important than ever before to show that we take pride in shopping local and supporting our small businesses.  We all know that small businesses provide an undeniable vibrancy and sentiment vital to community life.
  2. Original, Fresh and Handmade: If you like to give original, handmade gifts, you can’t beat shopping at a locally owned business. Business owners take pride in high craftsmanship and originality of their products.  When it comes to food – you can taste the flavors of fresh local ingredients.
  3. Personalized Experience: Shopping at small local businesses always offers a personal and sincere customer-owner interaction, impossible to replicate with large-scale vendors. Small business shop owners are interested in their clients, know their wants and needs, and are willing to give their customer personal attention to answer questions about their products. Furthermore, a small business owner is passionately and inextricably linked to the success of his or her business, which means they are experts on the product that they create and sell

 

Smart Shopping

Store comparison

Read the full story »

Local First Arizona Shops Local On A Budget

Image: Brandi Porter

Image: Brandi Porter

Price is a big factor when it comes to making your weekly grocery list.  So Sarah Schenck of Local First Arizona helps to dispel the myth that farmers markets are unaffordable.  Her groceries for the week came to $36.  This budget is based upon the average SNAP benefit recipients receive a week.  “Read The Full Story” to see her shopping list suggestion and meal plan.  You can also read her 7 Tips For Eating Local.

Still, the real value of shopping local foods is supporting your community.  For every dollar spent locally .73 stays within the local economy versus only .43 spent with a non-local business.  Most of the produce at the market is grown less than 10-miles away from where you come to shop. That means it is freshly picked, nutrient rich, and full of flavor.  Best of all, you can actually talk with the growers themselves, run into neighbors and meet family for a morning out at the market.

“Read The Full Story” to see LFA’s Market Shopping List.

Read the full story »

Importance of Supporting Local Growers & Producers

WhyMarkets_2015_Page1

Local food system practices such as farmers’ markets are directly tied to place and time as well as social, economical, ethical and physical systems within which they are located.  On both a community and individual scale, farmers’ markets can assist in sustaining human health and wellbeing.

Farmers’ markets encourage local food security through their promotion and support of local food production. The more food that is grown in Phoenix, the more the residents of the area will be buffered in the event of disruptions of long distance food supply such as weather events or political instabilities. Local food production and distribution can assist in fostering food security for the local region.  Farmers’ markets can be a way of supporting the economic viability of producers who wish to operate outside of the industrial food system (Lapping, 2004). By providing producers with opportunities to sell their goods locally, farmers’ markets enable them to operate in a way they consider ethical, while opening a path for others to do so as well.  Through reducing the distance that food is transported, farmers’ markets decrease “food miles”. The distance food takes to travel is directly related to the amount of fossil fuels required to get it there.

On a broader level, farmers’ markets can support the health of communities through emphasizing a ‘healthy-community’ approach in their operations. With this approach, decisions are made with the aim of improving the wellbeing of the community as a whole.  Farmers’ markets can encourage human wellbeing through various means. One way they can accomplish this is through educating consumers about health. The type of food that is offered at farmers’ markets can also sustain human health.

Farmers’ markets also support the local economy through what Lapping (2004) describes as the ‘multiplier effect.’ This phenomenon occurs when money spent at farmers’ markets is circulated in the community, leading to multiplying effects within the local economy. In addition, farmers’ markets are able to cater to niche and specialty markets such as the needs of senior citizens and ethnic communities. The direct interaction that local producers have with their customers means they are able to immediately determine and respond to consumers’ needs.

The interactions between producers and consumers at farmers’ markets often go beyond economic capital gains and can lead to ‘social capital’ formation. Social capital is based on the premise that social networks have value. It refers to the “collective value of all social networks and the inclinations that arise from these networks to do things for each other” (Putnam, 2000).  The capacity to come together creates a social space where community, friendships and social networking are fostered. This social space was important for producers in the study.

https://crcresearch.org/case-studies/crc-case-studies/farmers-markets-and-local-food-systems

Why Farmers Markets?

whymarkets_2015_page1