Slow Food Earth Market Maitland to start veggie boxes

VEGGIES GALORE: Slow Food Hunter Valley co-leader Helen Hughes with a basket of fresh vegetables from the Slow Food Earth Market in central Maitland.
VEGGIES GALORE: Slow Food Hunter Valley co-leader Helen Hughes with a basket of fresh vegetables from the Slow Food Earth Market in central Maitland.

Time-poor shoppers craving fresh food from nearby farms will soon be able to order vegetable boxes from the Slow Food Earth Market.

A mixed box of seasonal vegetables will be available for $35 and there will be an option to add olive oil and eggs at an additional cost.

The move will start on June 7 with a limit of 25 boxes available.

This will give Slow Food volunteers a manageable trial run, and the chance to iron out any problems before the box limit is lifted from the June 21 market. 

They can order through the Slow Food Hunter Valley website, and we’ll have some recipes in the box as well so they have some ideas about what to do with it,”

Slow Food Hunter Valley leader, and Maitland Citizen of the Year, Amorelle Dempster said.

“We will have it all packed and ready to be picked up after 4pm at the Slow Food stand.”

Ms Dempster said the venture would help increase the amount of local food being eaten across the city. 

“This way it’s more convenient for people who are working and can’t come to the market – and it also gives us the opportunity to allow all of our producers to contribute to the box,” she said. 

“People who work in and around The Levee will be able to take advantage of this.

“We want to get more fresh produce into more people and to make doing that more convenient for everybody.”

The varieties in the mixed box are likely to change at each market.

Orders will open in the lead up to the June 7 market and close on June 6. 

The fresh food box signals a new chapter for the market, which started in The Levee two years ago after the Mercury identified the need to support local farmers in its Feeding The Future series. 

The market has expanded from a handful of farmers to more than 17 producers who come to the city centre to sell their food at different times of the year. 

“Our vegetables always keep better than any supermarket produce – grown outside in the sun and just picked....good, clean, fair and local food,” Slow Food secretary Anne Kelly said.

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