Fall Market September 24, 2007

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One of my fondest childhood memories of fall was going with my mother to the Lancaster Farmers Market on Lancaster Pike in Strafford, Pennsylvania. The market was inside a huge old fluorescently-lit warehouse that had been converted to vendor stalls. Old porcelain and glass meat cases were alongside wooden fruit and vegetable stands and staffed by Amish workers who always let you know the characteristics of what you were buying and where things were grown or raised. The ceilings were high and the room was filled with the ambient hum of conversation as shoppers talked about flowers and fruits, sampled warm potato chips and homemade candies, and bought lots of funnel cake. Back then, before the area was built up, there were still places where my friends and I could walk through browning fall fields and flush out pheasants or see white-tailed deer scattering away at our approach.
East Coast: Today, my memories of Lancaster and Amish community farming are being revived as my sister Erin (who runs The FruitGuys east coast operation) connects with more Pennsylvania growers. Both the Red Bartlett and Green Bartlett pears and the Golden Supreme, Jonathan, and Smokehouse apples are all from Kauffman farms in Lancaster, PA (see photo of the original Kauffman farm founders). The Smokehouse apple is a variety that originated in the 1830s in Lancaster and is said to have gotten its name because the first tree identified as this variety grew near a smokehouse.
West Coast: We have a number of great fruits that come from small farms throughout California. Dan, our west coast buyer, says the organic Gilbert Golden apples from Gabriel Farm in Sebastopol, CA are "solid" (meaning tasty and good). He and Erin would also like to remind us all that many of our pears, especially the organic ones from small farms, may look a bit "rustic" (have some bumps and branch marks) but are still delicious. We choose fruit by taste first, then appearance. I think that the taste of these locally-grown fruits blow the socks off of the perfect-looking but bland-tasting stuff I've seen in grocery stores lately. Check out our east and west mixes and where the fruit is grown at: http://fruitguys.com/office-fruit-delivery/this-weeks-mix.
Want to Walk with the Banana Person? Come and kick off the ShapeUP SF Walking Challenge with Mayor Gavin Newsom and our BananaGal on October 3rd. at 11:30am at Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco. The first 50 people who sign up for a team get a free t-shirt. You can also just show up and walk with us that day. Contact erin@fruitguys.com and check out www.shapeupsfwalkingchallenge.org Enjoy and be fruitful!


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