With the growing backlash against highly processed foods, eating locally-grown, organic food is becoming an ever-increasing health trend among much of the American society.
However, as a college student, eating healthy and well-balanced meals can be a challenge. For many, it can be a difficult task to find organic, fresh produce at a relatively cheap price without leaving the metropolitan Atlanta area.
Yet Tech and the Atlanta community have come together to offer a solution to this conundrum plaguing Tech students by bringing a farmer’s market indoors to the convenient location of the Student Center.
The farmer’s market is held in the Student Center Commons every summer and remains a big hit among students who enjoy fresh foods.
“I’ve been coming to the farmer’s market every summer for the past two years,” said Lisa Dudkrow, a third-year ME major. “I love the diverse selection and the new things that people bring every year. All of the produce is always fresh and really good. I think my favorite thing at this year’s farmer’s market would have to be the honey stand.”
Vendor Melanie Garr brought a large variety of honey from a family member’s farm to sell at this year’s market.
“My sister and I have been attending the farmers market for the past two years. I really enjoy working this market because its fun to meet all of the diverse students and the business is usually good,” Garr said.
The honey at Garr’s stand included a diverse range of flavors from lavender to wild berry.
“We keep the hives near different plants to get the different flavors of honey,” Garr said.
Aside from honey, the market also contained stands selling various produce, jelly and assorted baked goods. The table with baked goods was part of a business opened relatively recently by Allison Macedo, CM ‘10.
“I graduated in Dec., and after I graduated some of my sorority sisters, and I decided to start a business,” Macedo said. “We started the business in Jan., and we have been working hard ever since. We don’t have a store or any facility yet, but we are continuing to grow and expand.”
At the market, Macedo was selling sweet bread and cinnamon rolls.
“We started the business selling things that are fairly basic to make so more people could get involved. All of our profits go to sending a different person to do humanitarian work. I’m very excited about the potential for our business because I’ve always wanted to help people and I think this is a very significant way to reach that goal.” Macedo said.
Next to Macedo’s stand was a produce table run by merchant Coco Collins. As was the case with many others at the market, Collins’ produce was grown in the confines of her very own garden at her house.
“Now here we have some day lilies and blueberries. Everything I’m selling today was freshly picked from my private garden. I have been attending the Tech farmer’s market for two years. I really like to come because usually business is good, and I think it’s good to offer fresh produce to college students,” Collins said.
Besides selling produce, Collins also provided several recipes and samples as well.
“I will definitely come back next year,” said Aaren Masando, a second-year BIOL major. “I loved looking through all of the fresh foods that were brought in, and the merchants were extremely nice and helpful. I thought it was a great event, and in such a covenant location too.”