Box Elder Small Tract Farm &Orchard Outreach & Development
The BEST FOOD Initiative is a program of the Brigham City Farmers Market. The goal of this project is to create a direct Farm to School, Farm to Consumer, and Farm to Institution marketplace. You will find information about this program at the Farmers Market which begins June 17th, 2017. The Farmers Market, Operated by Historic Downtown Brigham City, is uniquely positioned to serve as the catalyst in this program because we are a non-profit organization engaged in historic preservation and economic development, and we are without the constraints of profit or market share. We also have the unique fortune to have over a dozen community partners who are working with us on this initiative.
Why, you might ask? Because the future of Utah's Famous Fruit Way is in jeopardy!
A survey conducted by Lisa Duskin-Goede, Coordinator with the Bear River Heritage Area, a program of the Bear River Association of Governments in 2015 reveals a concerning decline in our roadside Fruit Stands along Utah's popular Fruit Way.
One only needs to drive Hwy 89 between Brigham City and the Box Elder County line to see the evidence first hand. Where once there were thriving produce stands, there now are abandoned buildings, used car outlets, or non-agriculture retail operations.
Many in the rising generation are less interested in agriculture, than in rising property values and the potential windfall from inheriting acreage that can be subdivided into residential projects. And it's no wonder, the views are quite spectacular. We believe that a balance of preservation and economic development go hand in hand and we support the development of programs to preserve this legacy.
We believe that Utah's Famous Fruit Way ought to be preserved as a state heritage site and we have developed an initiative that will help. The BEST FOOD initiative is designed to do five things:
- Identify the small tract farming & orchard operations in the eastern portion of Box Elder County
- Provide education, training, GAP certification, and ongoing support to qualify for institutional purchasing programs
- Create a cooperative marketing campaign to drive awareness and educate consumers
- Develop an institutional customer base for direct Farm purchasing, both in and outside of our Farmers Market
- Create a community Food Hub which includes basic processing equipment and facilities for a year round public market
What can you do to help? For starters, tell your friends in agriculture! Then attend the Farmers Market as a vendor and consumer and help us build. That's a beginning, there will be more details as our program develops and funding is secured.
If you have interest in this initiative, please contact us.