Farmers Market Update – April 2022

by Dan Foster

Farmers Market Manager’s Picks:

  • Glass Onion Farm – Brand new 1/2-acre farm in Sonoma County growing plant starts. I have a basil plant from them in my window that’s doing great.
  • Forever Bloom Farm – Wonderful 5-acre flower farm in Pescadero. They have been in AIM’s markets for a few years but just joined Grand Lake last week. Their bouquets are so beautiful.
  • Rainbow Ranch – Not to be confused with Rainbow Orchards who also attend Grand Lake, Rainbow Ranch is an organic 5-acre farm in Ojai growing avocados, Kishu mandarins, pixie tangerines, and jujubes. The quality of these products is top notch. If you have never had a dried jujube, go get some while you still can!
Entertainment Schedule:
April   2 – Phat Luv Band: Funk, Soul, Rock, and LOVE
April   9 – Nothin’ But Fun Band: Rock and Blues that twangs and grooves
April 16 – Teacher Barb Music: Soulful originals and timeless rock n’roll + blues and jazz
April 23 – Aloha Uke Squad: Popular songs on ukulele

New Market Participant Pipeline (these folks are confirmed but not all have a firm start date yet):

Xulo – traditional flour tortillas made with just four ingredients: flour, water, salt, and fats ranging from organic butter, duck fat, coconut oil, pork fat to bacon fat. Par-cooked so you can experience the magic of a homemade flour tortilla that puffs in front of your eyes. Like grandma used to make.

Juicy Bottle Service – cold pressed, small batch bottled juices

Donut Petit – gourmet donuts with vegan and gluten free options – Starts 4/2!

Oya Organics – organic farm in Hollister selling row crops and a variety of value-added items made from their crops

Solorios Organics – organic 6.5-acre farm in Watsonville selling row crops and berries

Volcano Kimchi –  San Francisco-based maker of vegan, organic, and gluten-free kimchi, as well as other Korean-inspired fermented food products, including speciality sauces and grab-and-go meals

Annie’s T Cakes – Asian American, woman-owned snack company creating vegan, East Asian treats

Kayma Foods – Algerian wife‑and‑husband‑owned eatery that welcomes you with halal North African fare with Bedouin, Berber, Mediterranean, and French influences—such as hearty and flavorful soups and sandwiches, grilled chicken, and baklawa

Encina Farms – dedicated to growing Iberico hogs with the utmost attention paid to quality standards and leveraging new practices with no hormones or antibiotics. They incorporate traditional Spanish practices and methods, such as finishing their hogs on a diet of acorns to improve flavor and nutritional profile. The richer, more complex and interesting flavor truly differentiates their products.

Silver Sky Ranch – a brother-owned ranching operation focused on pastured proteins. They raise cattle for beef, sheep for lamb, and chickens for egg and meat.

Mill Valley Pasta Co. – makes small batch artisan bronze and brass cut pastas and various products meant to adorn or accompany pasta. Their pastas are made with organic semolina (gluten-free pasta is also available) and are slowly dried in the open air for superior bite and texture. Their provisions are made with local ingredients, often sourced from the local farms that also vend at the markets they attend. Their fresh pastas are made only hours before they make their way to market and feature unique flavors highlighting both the chef’s inspiration, seasonality, and locally available products.

Rize Up Bakery –  a fledgling San Francisco-based, Black-owned bakery focused on reinventing and rethinking traditional sourdough. Rize Up started as a quarantine project in the Spring of 2020, born in response to the social unrest caused by the murder of George Floyd and the disparate impact of the pandemic on the Black community. Founder Azikiwee Anderson was overcome with a need to make a difference and hopefully inspire young Black and Brown bakers to think outside the traditional box as representation matters. Rize Up wants to change the world one loaf of beautiful and thoughtful bread at a time, and share their love of delicious, thoughtfully baked breads made with natural, organic, sustainable, high quality ingredients! Honored to feed your soul.

Marina Bay Bakery – local, neighborhood bakery from Richmond, focused on 100% whole wheat sourdoughs, gluten free sourdoughs and other whole wheat and gluten free pastries and baked goods.

Dooryard Provisions a small batch local packaged food business focusing on seasonal and hand foraged foods. Choose between local seaweeds, herbal tisanes, healing spice blends, and provisions for your journey or everyday. Made from all organic ingredients and focuses on using seasonal, foraged, and gleaned foods, as well as uses local farmers from throughout Sonoma and Marin counties.

Market Participants who have returned since the last update: 

Aricham Artisan
Happy Quail Farms
Stone Root
Home Maid

Out temporarily: 

Early Bird Farm and Mill
Collardz by Soul
La Cascada
Squabish Pretzels

Out for Season:

Pang Yang Farms
Feather River Farms
Sunnyland
G & S Corn
Kashiwase
Peach Farm
Lucero
Triple Delight Blueberries
Gotelli Cherries
Fenella’s Berries
Balakian

Dan Foster has been a market manager with AIM since 2017 and is currently managing the Grand Lake Oakland Farmers Markets. Prior to his time with AIM, Dan spent eleven years in produce/retail management at Whole Foods Market. Dan lives in Novato with his wife and two (soon to be three) daughters. Dan studied Music Business/Management at Berklee College of Music in Boston. In his free time, he makes music, plays games, or hoops it up in a local basketball rec league.
Contact: dan@agriculturalinstitute.org