Supporting local farmers strengthens the community

Matt Keefauver and Rosie Carter, representing the Buy Local campaign donated 13 books related to growing food locally to the Cortez Library. Librarian Joanie Howland accepted the books for the library. Enlargephoto

Journal/Sam Green

Matt Keefauver and Rosie Carter, representing the Buy Local campaign donated 13 books related to growing food locally to the Cortez Library. Librarian Joanie Howland accepted the books for the library.

The Montelores Buy Local campaign was started in 2007 by Rosie Carter of Stonefree Farms and Matt Keefauver of Tierra Madre Herbs to promote local food production and the sale of local foods to locals. Rosie and Matt believe that by supporting local farmers, we can strengthen the community and create conversations between the producers and consumers of local foods. They began with the production of 200 small bumper-stickers and within a year produced another 200. In 2010, they also began to sell “Buy Local” T-shirts at the Cortez Farmers Market. The proceeds from these items resulted in the donation of 13 books about local and sustainable agriculture to the Cortez Public Library. The future goals of the Montelores Buy Local campaign are to continue to promote local food production and consumption and to empower individuals to make food choices that support local farmers and in turn — the community. Currently Montelores “Buy Local” stickers and shirts may be purchased at The Farm in downtown Cortez.

Thanks to Rosie and Matt for their donations. The “Have-More” Plan by Ed and Carolyn Robinson is a reprint of a book from 60 years ago. In 1942 the authors decided to move from the confines of New York City and make part of their living off of a few acres that adjoined their home. They give advice on landscaping, designing your house, obtaining water, building a small barn, raising herbs, berries, fruit trees, chickens, geese, turkeys, ducks, rabbits, pigs, goats, cows and sheep. They even discuss keeping bees; also, canning, freezing, dehydrating, and root cellaring. There is even a section on fish farming. These folks seemed to have done it all and enjoyed the experience.

Another book on self-sufficiency is The Backyard Homestead. The front cover claims, “Produce all the food you need on just a quarter acre!” There is a section on what you can do with smaller parcels of land. And besides what you would expect — poultry, cows, fruits and vegetables — this book talks about raising nuts, brewing your own beer, making your own wine, making your own cheese, yogurt and ice cream.

Homegrown Whole Grains by Sara Pitzer takes the grower from field to recipe for numerous grains including: barley, buckwheat, corn amaranth, quinoa, spelt, emmer farro, einkorn, millet, oats, rye, rice and, of course, wheat. She suggests that small plots of grains can enrich your diet in many ways. Further grain recipes featuring bread can be found in Bread Making: Crafting the Perfect Loaf from Crust to Crumb by Lauren Chattman.

Buy Local also bought the library two books specifically on food preservation. One is The Beginners Guide to Preserving Food at Home by Janet Chadwick. The other, by Carol W. Costenbader, is called The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest. Recipes from the Root Cellar, by Andrea Chesman is an awesome book for the winter months. It covers some little-known vegetables with recipes that made mouths water!

Two books that discuss both the philosophy and pleasure of enjoying locally grown foods are The Locavore Way by Amy Cotler and Reclaiming Our Food by Tanya Denckla Cobb. Cotler says, “With pleasure and connection at its core, eating locally shifts how we engage with the most seminal ingredient in our lives: our food.” Cobb’s book has a section on traditional Native American farming including sections on Hopi and Navajo farming.

Included in this generous donation of books is The Complete Compost Gardening Guide by Barbara Pleasant and Deborah L. Martin and Grass Fed Cattle by Julius Ruechel.

Two more books complete the gift, both on organic farming and gardening. The Organic Farming Manual: A Comprehensive Guide to Starting and Running a Certified Organic Farm by Ann Larkin Hansen, and The Gardeners A-Z Guide to Growing Organic Food, also by Tanya Denckla.

These 13 books on self-sustainability, organic farming and cooking are all great additions to our local collection. Thank you to Matt Keefauver and Rosie Carter!

Joanie Howland is director of the Cortez Public Library, 202 N. Park St. She can be reached at 565-8117.

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