Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Garden Update / Beets me

It's garden time in the Okanagan. Sure, the season got off to a slow start, but be patient. It'll come. Hopefully.

The first run of Poblanos are in. Good times! These grew right in the back yard. Started them from seed. Simple! And don't you make no never mind about the lil' scab on the second to the left on the bottom. We all have scars--true or false?

You gotta love this whole web 2.0 paradigm...type "Poblano pepper recipes" into your google machine and what comes up first? A blog called "Poblano Pepper Recipes", that's what.

Speaking of that strange phenomena of humans willingly and freely sharing data with one another for free, I came across this handsome Canadian blog wherein the poblano makes an intriguing partner. Hands up, who in the last year has made a creamy cauliflower poblano soup?

Maybe I'm not seeing too many hands, as I'm given to understand that pairing wine and peppers isn't always the easiest thing to do, or the most flattering for either.

Peppers and beer? And where is our Rancho Chico anyhow?

In other news, someone did a little food costing and came to the staggering realisation that they were paying $1.16 per beet, for the beets on the right.

Which is probably a deal when you consider all the travelling they got to do and all the packaging they got to sleep in.

The ones on the left are merely from my back yard a few kilometres away. Those poor beets never had the joy of seeing a packaging plant, or a "reefer truck" since they came to work with me in a re-used paper bag. Those beets on the left are hardly worth $1.16 each. Plain ol' boring local unpackaged Okanagan back yard garden beets...not even from a farm with a name.

Questions to the economy: How much do the beets on the left actually, really cost? And just how is that figured out anyway? Is there a difference between the "cost" of something and the "value" of something, and if so, what accounts for (and who determines) that difference?

Question to cooks: Which one would you rather use?

Question to eaters: Which one would you rather eat?

Question to you, dear reader: if I had a surplus of these beets (on the left) and I wanted to put them up for sale, barter or trade on the open market, what would be my best option?
  1. Try and get a contract with one of the large food distributors that serve the valley
  2. Ask at the local supermarkets if they would be willing to allocate some retail space for local tax paying citizen grown local product
  3. Put a notice on the Okanagan Daily Special Stock Exchange [ODSSE] saying "hey, I got a small surplus of beets and I bet I can come in at under $1.16 or I'll trade for php tutoring" (or something similar.)

Join the Okanagan Daily Special Stock Exchange [ODSSE]! What is it? Why it's just a simple listserv--a mailing list, connecting producers and consumers via the internet. Is that clever or what? Farmers and cooks, growers and eaters alike are encouraged to join. Got some beets you want to move? Looking to beat $1.16 a beet? JOIN! It's easy and fun!

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