With Thanksgiving less than a week away, it’s time to start thinking about the food we eagerly anticipate purchasing, preparing and enjoying! Being involved in agribusiness gives us a clear perspective of what it takes to turn that seed into the beloved Thanksgiving Day dish the family looks forward to each year – such as the scalloped corn using Gramma’s recipe and the green bean casserole (or hotdish if you are truly Minnesotan). It is no small feat nurturing that tiny seed into the final masterpiece served on Thanksgiving…the hours of preparation involved on so many levels is mindboggling when you think about it. From the seed salesmen, to the farmers, to the laborers (including those picking rock and walking beans – I’m dating myself, I know, but the memories are still very vivid!), to the agronomists, to the co-op team spraying and fertilizing, to the land improvement/drainage experts, to the canning companies, to the commodity transporters, to the checkout personnel at the grocery store, to the moms, wives, sisters, grandmas and family “cooks” who prepare, taste test, and serve the Thanksgiving delicacies. There are so many hands involved in developing, planting, growing, nurturing, harvesting, processing, packaging, transporting, distributing, and preparing our food that it’s truly amazing how much of our labor force is involved in putting food in our mouths.
In October, Dan and I visited the Rochester Downtown Farmers Market where one of our employees, Matt, was working his family’s produce booth, Whitewater Farms, which was filled with home grown sweet potatoes, onions, potatoes, carrots, etc…Another booth was owned and operated by friends of ours, Thoreson Farms from Wanamingo. What a wonderful place to purchase fresh produce, meats, flowers, and homemade jams to support our local farmers! Fortunately, they are taking the market inside from November through April. You can find out the location and schedule at www.rochesterdowntownfarmersmarket.org. It is open this Saturday, Nov. 21 so you still have a chance to purchase some fresh produce for your Thanksgiving feast!
In the United States, we are blessed with how plentiful food choices are and how economical. Other countries of the world are not nearly as fortunate, and we need to be mindful of how we can contribute to feeding the hungry. There are so many great organizations out there diligently working to collect and distribute food to those in need – in the United States and abroad. Let’s remember to share our bounty because this year’s harvest was so great, and we are so fortunate. During this time of Thanksgiving, we feel Thankful, Grateful, Blessed! We hope you do too!