Everybody benefits from supporting their local farmers market. It’s easy to do, especially when the market has multiple vendors offering a good variety and is close to your home. When you support your local farmers’ market, you are supporting something much greater than you imagine.
The Fiber of the Community
Local farmers markets have the unique ability to bring locals together by providing a lively, family friendly environment that everyone can enjoy.
Local produce; crafts; vegan, vegetarian, and mainstream food options; desserts; clothing and more can be found at your local farmers market. In a way it should be called a Community market as it represents a segment of your town coming together offering their best products for everyone to consume and enjoy.
Building the local economy begins at the farmers market. New small businesses often begin their journey here in order to test the market with their products. The level of success many of them find at the market will decide if they go on to open a local store front. The merchants that move to a brick and mortar space will look to hire local help. This is something that often gets overlooked but is very important to keep in mind as you support your local farmers market. The success of the small business merchants will spill over to the economical success of your town.
Tourist will come from far and wide to visit your town because of your beautiful beaches, your beautiful rivers or your grand mountains. One way of exposing tourists to the local people and culture is through the farmers markets.
Tourists often look to find the local farmers markets and see for themselves the produce and arts that are not necessarily available at your traditional malls. These folks want to take as much as they can from their experience in your town and what better way to do so than at the local, friendly farmers’ market.
One more attraction for tourists are local farms which gives your guests a refreshing perspective on how food is grown locally. We wrote a blog post on the tours we offer of our urban farm and we were amazed on how many great friends we made thanks to them.
Way too often the price point is overlooked. Local products, especially produce are immune to the price shifts in the general market as they are transported a very short distance to arrive at their destination.
In this jungle community, self-sustaining homes are built from trash and can withstand the deadliest storms.
When Noemi and Carlos Chaparro peered outside on September 21, 2017, they gasped at the destruction. Hurricane Maria, which had made landfall the previous day, had uprooted the gracious old palm and bamboo groves that once stood on their family farm in northwest Puerto Rico. The wind had torn the roof off the bedroom their two sons shared. The electricity was down. To get water, Carlos and Noemi had to carry buckets from a nearby river. To feed their three kids, they captured a pigeon and cracked open coconuts. The family couldn’t reach a working phone until early October. “It was traumatic,” Noemi told me. “Apocalyptic.”
For the Chaparros and millions of other Puerto Ricans, the hurricane served as a bitter reminder that this vestige of forgotten American empire still relies on a federal government that can’t be trusted to provide for even its most basic needs. After Maria, the Trump administration responded, but with delays. Convinced the funds would only go to paying off Puerto Rico’s debts, President Donald Trump tried to divert aid to the battered coasts of Texas and Florida. Poor communication, ruined infrastructure, and shoddy transportation left crucial aid stranded in Puerto Rico’s ports for weeks. Nearly 3,000 people died. Five months after the storm, a fifth of the island’s population still lacked electricity. No American community has suffered through a longer blackout.
“I hear from clients all the time, today, who think the entire region is decimated, no power, nothing open, no flights,” said one of the thousands of luxury travel advisors attending the annual Virtuoso conference in Las Vegas two weeks ago told me, shaking his head in disbelief.
Totally not true.
In fact, most islands were unscathed by last year’s horrific hurricane season, and even those hit hard are nearly back to the hotel, villa, restaurant and flight levels they enjoyed before the storm. But what may surprise many high-end travelers is the silver lining – because so many hotels rebuilt partially or completely, taking advantage of the opportunity to expand, improve or update, many of the Caribbean’s top resorts are better than ever. Another surprise – occupancy for the coming peak holiday, winter and spring break season is nearly back to normal levels, so don’t expect bargain, and if you are waiting to see what happens and book last minute, you will likely get shut out. For the most part this winter the Caribbean will see business as usual – only better.
Anguilla is a perfect example. One of the most traditionally luxurious islands in the Caribbean, it is home to five top tier luxury resorts and countless deluxe villas, a favorite way to stay on the island. Even after Anguilla was ravaged by storms last summer, owners managed to get 70% of the villas reopened before last Christmas season. Most of the rest of the work was done in the first quarter of this year, and currently the vast majority of the villas, 95% of the island’s restaurants, and three of the five top hotels are already open. The remaining two resorts, the Belmond Cap Juluca and Auberge Resorts’ Malliouhana, are both reopening in time for the holidays. These are two of the best luxury properties in the entire Caribbean and they will essentially be brand new.
Since our blog titled, “Elon Musk Willing to Power Puerto Rico” of 6 October, a few hundred Powerwall battery packs for solar power energy arrived in Puerto Rico.
According to *Frederic Lambert of Electrek.co, “The new shipment arrived not long after Musk spoke with Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello last week to talk about ways for Tesla Energy to help rebuild the power grid destroyed by the two hurricanes that recently hit the Caribbean.”
That’s not all. Elon Musk is now putting extra effort into bringing power back to Puerto Rico AND other affected areas by unveiling his new Tesla Semi truck earlier than planned:
Tesla, the automaker, is changing the planned revealing date of its electric truck, the Tesla Semi, from October 26 to *November 16 (according to Electrek.co) as it focuses on Model 3 production and aiding “power-less” Puerto Rico.
Tesla Semi, Model 3 truck image from trucks.com
Currently, less than 20% of the island has power and some areas may experience months without electricity. That is why Tesla plans to first focus on helping hospitals and medical centers to get stable power.
That is, if given the green light to go ahead. Elon Musk has helped many smaller islands, like Ta’u Island in Samoa, with his solar power devices and tweeted this yesterday:
“The Tesla team has done this for many smaller islands around the world, but there is no scalability limit, so it can be done for Puerto Rico too. Such a decision would be in the hands of the PR govt, PUC, any commercial stakeholders and, most importantly, the people of PR.”
Above is a video about the SolarCity created with Tesla’s Microgrid Solar Power in Samoa.
In response to this, Puerto Rico Governor Ricky Rossello showed interest, tweeting “Let’s talk” to Musk, saying “PR could be that flagship project.”
Musk has already done his part for Puerto Rico. Hurricane Maria left the island’s power grid in tatters, so Tesla reportedly sent hundreds of Powerwalls — battery systems designed to store energy — along with employees to install them in an effort to restore power.
Powerwall batteries can be paired with solar panels to help restore the grid. According to Fortune.com “the Powerwall, which was first introduced in April 2015, is a battery designed for homes that store the energy generated by solar panels.”
Musk also donated $250,000 of his own money to the relief effort.
In the meantime, President Donald Trump said on Fox News in an interview with Geraldo Rivera, “the island’s debt will have to be wiped out.” Puerto Rico owes over $70 billion to creditors while the total storm cost is between $45 and 90 billion dollars.
It is with sadness and awe that one watches The Weather Channel today after hurricane Maria struck the Virgin Islands and also Puerto Rico.
According to the mayor of San Juan, PR, Maria’s power surge on the island will take 4 to 6 months to repair as electricity outages are recorded on the whole island. Yes, no electricity in Puerto Rico except for those who had their own generators.
Although the worst of the hurricane has passed the island, the storm is not over yet. Storm surges are still dangerous and record flooding of the river Rio de la Plata, south-west of San Juan, is a big problem for people in the region. FEMA rescue teams are being deployed to the island today.