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Byron Bay Farmers Markets

11 Apr

Today Joe and I had the good fortune to venture to Byron Bay Organic Farmers Markets. Usually, we visit our local farmers markets, but we had heard that the ones at Byron was something special, and as it’s a neighbouring town, it’s not too far out of our way. And let me tell you, I am so glad we did make the trip! Yes, it was a little expensive compared to our regular markets, but wow! So much goodness in one place is well worth it. This is our grocery bag. You be the judge and see if you could call the price of our haul.

We got:

  • 500 grams free ranged pork loin chops from Sunforest Farms
  • 500 grams free ranged pork collar steak from Sunforest Farms
  • 280 grams goats cheese – lemon merthyl flavoured from Nimbin Valley Dairy
  • pepper pecorino from Bangalow Cheeses
  • 300 grams tempeh with fava beans and wakame from Byron Bay Tempeh
  • 500 grams brown rice from Nimbin Valley Rice
  • 3 large squash
  • 5 baby corn
  • 300 grams cherry tomatoes
  • 500 grams shiitake mushrooms
  • 250 grams Dutch cream mushrooms
  • 4 passionfruit
  • 2 punnets of blueberries
  • 1 dragon fruit
  • 1 star fruit
  • 5 bananas
  • 5 bunches Bok choy
  • 1 kilo Kipper potatoes
  • 3 large zucchini
  • punnet lettuce seedlings (not pictured)
  • punnet broad bean seedlings (not pictured)
  • punnet bok choy seedlings (not pictured)

Pinny is a local favourite with her produce, jams and preserves. She does can be found at both Ballina (Sunday am) and Byron Bay (Thursday am) Farmers Markets.

How much do you think this would have cost us? Go on, have a guess!  (Please put your guess in the comments section – I am actually interested in what you guessed!) This little bag of goodies cost $80. When assessing the value of these goods, there are a few things to bare in mind:

  • All of these products are fresh. They haven’t been bought in bulk, shipped to a distribution centre, spent a few months in cold storage and then put into retail outlets for the consumers. They were hand-picked within the last day or so.
  • All of these items are locally made. Purchasing these items supported the local economy, and supports local enterprise.
  • All of these items are organic. The carbon footprint of these products will be dramatically lower when compared to commercially produced alternatives. Additionally, organic farming practices are much more sustainable when compared to the alternative.

For most people (us included) this is not a weekly shop. We just couldn’t afford it on a weekly basis, but once a month, for one shop, it is definitely a more sustainable (and economically possible) option. For our family, the price / ethical trade-off is an acceptable justification. Remember what I said recently about you having an incredible weapon each time you shop? The choice is ultimately yours, and  a commitment to just one more ethical shop a month or switching to one organic brand per month is a huge step. So what are you waiting for? Find your local farmers markets, and check it out. You never know… you just might be surprised!

Ballina Farmers Markets (pictured) operate on a Sunday morning, from dawn to 10am.

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14 Comments

Posted by on April 11, 2012 in Env: Food Related, Env: Sustainability

 

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14 responses to “Byron Bay Farmers Markets

  1. Ragamuffin Diaries

    April 12, 2012 at 9:39 am

    oh wow; that all looks so delicious! i’m a bit jealous…. no farmer’s markets in Alaska for 8 months out of the year!

     
    • mizrhi

      April 12, 2012 at 9:59 am

      Oh wow. I cant really consider places like Alaska when I go on these rants for obvious reasons – it just isn’t a fair comparison or expectation. (Side note: The thought of that much snow, darkness and cold is just so foreign to me here in the tropics!) Do you have the ability to grow your own fresh stuff indoors, Bec?

       
      • Ragamuffin Diaries

        April 12, 2012 at 10:27 am

        I grow sprouts & some micro-greens all throughout the winter, but we can’t do much else indoors because of the light issue… During the winter some days only have about 4-5 hours of light, and since we use solar power, having a grow-light on isn’t realistic. I do love the sprouts though! They always make me so happy….

         
        • mizrhi

          April 12, 2012 at 10:31 am

          I am looking into starting my own sprouts. I’ve never done it before but I’m having trouble finding the right kind of jar for it.

          Do you have supermarkets near by that allows you to buy some fresh’ish produce? eggs? milk? Are the available staples very expensive through the winter? Seems so hostile to me. Id love to know more, Bec.

           
        • Ragamuffin Diaries

          April 13, 2012 at 2:05 am

          Sprouts are so easy to grow and so rewarding! Any kind of jar will work pretty much; we use a quart mason jar with some screen over the top – it works great.

          There are definitely supermarkets around, since I’m living in the city right now, but in a couple weeks I’ll be moving out to where it’ll be a 5-6 hour drive to any fresh groceries! Thankfully we’re getting close to garden season! :-) I have been able to get milk & eggs from a local farm here, which has been wonderful.

          It’s definitely a challenge at times, but it’s still such a beautiful place and absolutely wonderful in the summer that the winters are (most of the time!) worth it.

           
        • mizrhi

          April 13, 2012 at 7:34 am

          Sounds so foreign to me that it almost sounds exciting! There is a homey rustic feeling to what you describe… almost romantic. Id enjoy the challenge of preparing hot delicious meals, and of course my own breads (which I seem unable to do atm!) The temp here stays above 14oC most of winter. Ahhh sub tropics – how I thee! Thank you so much for sharing, Bec. Its a real eye opener!

           
  2. debbrunson

    April 12, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    Let the bounty begin!! :D Beautiful posts of your selections.

     
    • mizrhi

      April 12, 2012 at 3:51 pm

      I just adore farmers markets. I missed going today, but I have my usual fruit and veggie box being delivered tomorrow.

       
      • debbrunson

        April 12, 2012 at 4:02 pm

        Like Christmas! My boxes start in June i think :D

         
        • mizrhi

          April 12, 2012 at 4:09 pm

          I am hoping for some more figs. They are in season here at the moment and are just so delicious. I am making fig and cheese tart tonight .

          (first time with anything like this. I am being very adventurous! *hold me, I’m scared*)

           
  3. Rahel

    April 22, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    Nice!! In my next destination, Spain, I’ll have a kitchen again and can’t wait to find a farmers market close by!

     
    • mizrhi

      April 22, 2012 at 9:51 pm

      I love cooking. Its become quiet a passion and a huge stress sink.

       

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