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Not by it’s food. Define a farm stand by the people.
The people who run it and the people it serves.
Don’t define a farm stand by its size.
A simple egg stand at the end of someone’s driveway and a sizeable mini-market attached to a commercial farm are both farm stands. Each connects neighbors to each other and reflects the way their communities live as well as the food they prepare.
A table set up at a farmers market is a farm stand. The market itself is a collection of farm stands. Each operator selects the seeds, the produce, the products to offer for sale to the community.
Food isn’t the only thing sold at a farm stand. Art, soap, flowers, and home décor are all possible farm stand finds.
Pay attention to what the people behind the stands choose to offer for sale (or give away for free). At first, the offerings give you insight on the personality of the grower or producer. Over time, the community will share ideas and recipes. The farm stand will start to reflect the people it serves.
You can learn a lot about the incredible variety of heirloom and hybrid fruits and vegetables that can be grown in small batches. Items that can be grown without the pressure of having to preserve it for shipping and appealing to a generic grocery produce selection.
You will learn a lot about how different cultures blended in a region based on the offerings at their local farm stands. You can get a sense of what’s missing in the big grocers in a community from looking at the selections of their micro-growers and small batch producers.
I am happy to draw attention to this amazing subculture. Farmstand culture.
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