When we think about farmers’ markets, we think about direct relationships between those who produce the food and those who consume it. We think about the communities built around food and environment and the knowledge shared in these spaces. While this might be a bit of a leap, we then started thinking about Mother’s Day and how it might connect to these local food-focused spaces. In the agri-food system, the supply chain has only gotten longer, and consumers are increasingly alienated from the things they consume. Farmers’ markets bring us closer to each other and to the world around us. There’s another key figure in our lives who can provide us with something similar: mothers.
Our coalition celebrates good quality, healthy, low environmental impact, local food, and the communities built around food. This week, we wanted to dedicate some space on this site to celebrate mothers – even if the specific day itself is celebrated on different dates in different countries. We started to think about the complexity of the mothers’ role– the care, the thought, the work, and how it can be a metaphor for how we take care of our planet and how our farmers take care of their produce. Even though our planet is referred to occasionally as Mother Earth, she also needs our care (and so do our mothers!)!
We thought about the many different types of mothers and mothering that exist on this planet and the different types of relationships that people have with mothers. They are not simple and cannot easily be described or compared – as they differ worldwide. In the same way that we cherish the biodiversity of our plants and animals, we cherish the different kinds of mothers and kinds of mothering.
So when we think about farmers’ markets as gathering spaces to establish a sense of community and to celebrate local actors, we are reminded of these same themes of care, thought, and work – we wonder if this may be one way of mothering or taking care of our beautiful planet. We wonder what role farmers’ markets play in your chosen family or in your Mother’s Day celebration.
by Christina Ermilio