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New changes coming to the East Texas farmer's markets

KETK
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POSTED: Thursday, May 2, 2013 - 6:51pm

UPDATED: Friday, May 3, 2013 - 7:14am

East Texas communities are joining together to promote farmer's markets in the area.

The effort is to encourage East Texans to eat and buy locally.

Carmen Sosa had a vision six months ago.

She wanted a farmer's market with all locally grown produce.

"There was a disconnect between the farmer's and access to them so I saw a thriving need for a farmer's market in Tyler," said organizer of the East Texas Community Food Coalition Carmen Sosa.

Her vision is now becoming a reality.

Sosa and a group of other East Texans formed the East Texas Community Food Coalition focusing on community gardens and farmer's markets.

These goals are what attracted Tyler native Jennifer Mallios to the coalition.

" I remember coming here as a kid with my mom and sisters. We would get our stuff on Saturdays but this market has changed. We're going to have more involvement from the community, we're going to have musicians, artists so you can come and meet people. It's not just about grocery shopping its' about meeting your neighbor," said Mallios.  

All the produce sold at the two farmer's markets in Tyler and the ones in Jacksonville and Rusk are directly from the farmer

"All of our farmer's markets are "producers only." So you can't go buy something from another city and sell it as if it were your own," said Sosa. 

The city of Tyler, net health and the Department of Agriculture also are involved.

Stephanie Taylor with NetHealth says they will have $20 vouchers for those a part of the WIC program.

"By promoting and helping the farmers markets accept WIC benefits or SNAP benefits and build them up and sustain them we're hoping that we reach all of our population and that everyone can take advantage of all the great produce we grow in East Texas," said NetHealth Director of Community Outreach Stephanie Taylor.

 

The Fair Market will open Saturday May 4 from 7 a.m...-1 p.m... at the Fairgrounds.

The Library Market will open Thursday May 9 7 a.m...- 1 p.m... at the Tyler Public Library Downtown. 

 

For more information:

Contact the East Texas Community Food Coalition 

Carmen Sosa: (214) 649-2688  http://foodcoalition.org/  

or NetHealth at  

http://www.healthyeasttx.org/  

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