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Posts Tagged ‘produce’

Where I live in Michigan, winter weather gets to be a little overdrawn.  Winter seems like it is never going to end.  My way of coping is to dive into seed catalogs and gardening magazines.  It is like feasting on dessert after you have been on a starvation diet.  All of those plants with their lovely greenery and colorful blooms just lights up the soul and lifts the spirit.  Not only that, but when you are trying to buy fresh produce you quickly realize the high cost of fresh fruits and vegetables during the winter.  Cold frame gardening can help relieve the burden on your wallet if you build a couple of frames to supplement your produce needs.
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        Here is a story that illustrates the breakdown of American business.  Jim Crosby and his sister Linette are in a fierce and immediate battle to save their family owned mint farm business.  They are to be foreclosed on, any day now…they need to sell bottles of mint oil to save their business.  They are located in St. Johns, Michigan.  Michigan is one of the hardest hit states when it comes to the economy.  People here are struggling to hang on to the most basic necessities of life…this family only wants to be able to continue to provide a service to their customers…both old and NEW!  It is their dream to be able to continue marketing their mint oil.

         Their business has been owned by their family members since the early nineteen hundreds.  This is their legacy…and it needs an influx of cash, today.  You can visit their website ( http://www.getmint.com)  and help, to try to save an American owned business.   In a day and age where American business owners are moving out of the country left and right, to get cheaper labor and make more of a profit; it is nice to be able to support a company that has stayed in America while producing their product.  If you use mint oil for cooking, baking, tea, health aid, air freshner…or any other use…please buy from this company and help them stay in business…but, don’t dawdle…they need cash now to stay in business.  The bank that is planning to foreclose on them…could take their bottles of oil and they could take the equipment needed to continue producing the oil…thereby, putting them out of business.

         We have to make a stand for some kind of return to common sense…producing in America, selling in America and buying in America…this is how we build a strong infrastructure in the country once again.  You can build up business, jobs, and housing markets by keeping American’s working.  You want to strenthen the economy?  Stop buying everything from other countries (because it’s cheaper) and start supporting American owned and operated business that produce quality products.  The job or business that you save just might be your own!

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       We all know that the economy in the United States isn’t as healthy as it could be.  We know that gas prices are sky rocketing, we know that everything keeps going up except the average American’s paycheck.  Food prices in restaurants and grocery stores keep climbing because they have to pass on the cost of gasoline increases that it takes to produce and ship their products. 

         The media has been building up the idea of stockpiling food…it is not a new idea…Grandma used to do it too…it is called, preserving food.  Everyday family life has changed dramatically, but not all of it is for the good.

       Canning, drying,  and freezing food is in it’s own way, stockpiling food for when the prices and the availability cause food to be scarce in a home. It used to be a fact of life that to get through a winter you had to do this to survive.  I am a baby boomer so i remember when it was the way things were done.  Then, as i transitioned to adulthood and rasing my own family, i did the same thing for a time; when life was about stretching the money we had, to make it last long enough to feed the children.  

        As the children aged, we started to buy our food in bulk, in the fall can good sales, that the major grocery stores do every year.  Over the last 8 years or so, you started finding that the can good sales weren’t as cheap as they used to be.  You began to get less can goods, for the same amount of money…everything started to cost more.  Some people are never going to want to take care of canning, drying, or freezing their own food…they will just continue to pay whatever it costs in the stores.  But, i feel that in the last decade or so, we are starting to see many families looking to learn some of the old ways.  It is going to become more common as young families want to feel more in control of what they put into their family’s diet and save money at the same time.  

        Already, farm markets are making a huge come back.  The media is touting ways to save money and help green up our buying habits, by buying locally grown produce when we can.  This helps us cut down on how much pollution is put into our environment by cutting down on how far the produce is shipped across the country.  It is all about making some sacrifices and using our buying power to make a statement of dedication.

        I think you are going to see a resurgence of people growing and preserving their foods.  Especially with the last couple of years experiences with salmonella outbreaks, contaminated feeds, and the common usage of cancer causing pesticides.  The average person is wanting to eat food that is healthier and the more we learn about producing food that is organic and full of nutrients…the more that people are going to demand a higher standard of quality.

        So, my hat is off to Grandma & Grandpa and all of us who are brillant enough to understand that not all of the old ways are to be passed over for the quicker, easier, and more popular way of doing things.  We can accomplish much when we commit to using wisdom from the past, with wisdom from the present…to use wisdom for our future!

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