Locally Sourced

New South Miami Farmers Market Opens Saturday

Florida vegetables, fruits, eggs, grass-fed beef, and cheese, oh my! These will be on sale in front of South Miami City Hall (6130 Sunset Drive) tomorrow (on Saturday) from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will also be jams, salsas, native and edible plants, and other products.

The market will be open year-round and will be operated by Earth Learning, the City of South Miami, and South Miami Green Task Force. Right now, it only accepts cash, but they plan on accepting SNAP dollars (food stamps) in the future.

Mario Yanez, co-director of Earth Learning, hopes to sell produce from home growers and community gardens, too: "We're trying to open it up and be creative and knock down barriers that usually prevent people from selling at a farmers market." Yanez says the plan is to visit home growers: "We're going to work with people to make sure they are growing organically and sustainably."  Yanez says organizers will also do their homework on participating farms, and perhaps visit them as well.

"Also, we're going the extra mile to collect produce from farmers who don't

have time to come to the market. We'll sell their produce at a central farm stand. " says Yanez. New foraging business Seriously Organics will help procure some of the produce both locally and outside South

Florida. Signs will let people know what comes from where. "It's not

just whether it's organic or not organic. We hope to have good signage

so that people have the right information and they can make decisions on

what they buy."

The apprentice urban farmers of the Community

FoodWorks program run the farm stand and learn the

business behind it. Whatever they grow will also be sold at the

market. Muriel Olivares of Little River Market Garden will help coordinate the farm stand and also sell plants

from her own farm. Here is a

list of their vendors.

Yanez hopes the market will also be a community meeting ground: "We want to create a regular meeting place where people find out what's going on,

and build relationships with farmers and vendors as well as with each other. We want to build the local infrastructure for local food to really happen.  We are about invigorating the local economy, keeping dollars here, and also just about improving food."

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Trina Sargalski