Three times a day at least, most of us have the addiction to food, need a fix.
Not just food when you live in Maine but organic, wholesome foodstuffs. Grown close to home, for the local field to the table delivery. Or from the pasture to the freezer.
Canning and preserving in summer kitchens of old Maine farm homes.
Not all glamorous when being done with preparing strawberries on the hottest day of a Maine July summer.
The stewed tomatoes, bread and butter pickles put up later on in the fall food preparation.
But retrieving the fruits of the labor from the third shelf of the cellar root cellar.
In the dead quiet of a Maine winter of drifting snow. Making it so so more than worth the effort.
Because you gotta eat and hunger improves the taste.
Quality food that you know was grown to strict standards, without the commercial sprays that carry the skull and cross bone pirate tattoos on each canister.
Or beef, dairy, poultry without the critter full of BST, other growth hormones like factory farms use. Where animals are shoulder to shoulder, not so happy and whisper about the conditions. Unlike the ones dotting the spacious pastures for the dairy and beef cows, the sheep, goats, pigs. Corrals, paddocks around Maine farms for horses.
During the 1960's and 1970's Maine saw an influx of young people with high ideals, wanting the good life in Maine. But not raised on farms, just gravitating to the life style of plant it, roll it, make it home grown.
Some were from well heeled families but adopting a bohemian lifestyle. Breaking away from silver spoons. To back to basics. Labels happened, were coined such as "crunchy, granola, back to nature, hippy". Back to the land is not regressive or primitive.
It is a choice for a career and the life style that comes with it.
For those just embracing the great low cost, spacious four season outdoors of Maine.
Learning their own set of survival skills on the Maine small farm.
Many of those homesteaders evolved or were forced to leave the small farming way of life though.
Because of inability to make it profitable. To feed themselves, have enough to sell some of the bountiful harvest surplus to others too. To be meet the needs of the audience hungry. For affordable, nutritious food grown and raised in Maine.
Now the talk centered, racketed up on not just producing good food locally, but how to make it profitable enough for operations to grow and prosper.
For sustainable agriculture producers that need to secure steady, stable markets. To steadily address the issues every new and well seasoned farmer in Maine alike face daily.
In Vacationland's resurgence of smaller scale agriculture, the need sparked for a local Maine food movement credit union.
To zero in on the specific problems of small farm operations in Maine.
Smooth the ups and downs when money flow hose kinks.
The spigot connected to the check book does not flow.
To lubricate, grease the financial overhead wheels of the farm in Maine operation with currency.
Moving beyond just talking about local Maine food hubs too. Kicking them into gear. Getting them up and running is the buzz in the Pine tree state newsprint, over the airwaves too. Or the need for central freezers to keep the blueberries, fish from Atlantic Canada, whatever produce or product. That will perish if not handled with care. Along the way to the market local or far away.
Maine is a few miles up the road from population centers, the major consuming markets.
So feeding the close to home is popular but like any business, your profit is in the expenses. You need enough customers reaching for the locally grown product. Consistency in the growing to make them want to, to trust in the brand they experience and like. Raising kids to desire to take over the reins. To the creating the wealth from tilling the small Maine farm operation dirt.
Getting the price of organic Maine food low enough to tip the scales away from trucked in, high volume, lower cost foodstuffs from who knows where.
What John and Jane Shopper are used to reaching for as they push the wire cart with one hand, run the weekly household food budget caluculator with the other.
Allowing the small Maine farmer of today not to just enjoy the lifestyle of rural agriculture. But make enough money to stay on that patch of dirt. His/her head above water and the finances in the black to keep the Maine small farm going.
Read more on one recent Maine Organic Farming article.