CFMC Fund of the Month: Morgan County Farmers' Market Association



For the month of May we are showcasing the Morgan County Farmers' Market Association (MCFMA), which has been a fund at the CFMC since 2009. Over the past six years, the MCFMA has grown leaps and bounds, expanding it's original purpose of providing an attractive venue for consumers to purchase locally grown, fresh produce from local growers and producers to include goals that further develop the local community on a number of fronts.

Today, the MCFMA works to support and develop local farmers and growers, to enrich and educate the community by promoting a healthy lifestyle, and to provide community activities that foster social gathering and interaction within the municipal areas of Morgan County. 


Community Development 

 

Last year the Eminence Community Schools' FFA Community Garden began with a variety of herbs and vegetables that were started inside the school. As the months grew warmer, raised beds were built, and the seedlings transplanted into their new home. The Morgan County Farmers' Market Association assisted with this fledgling garden by providing a grant for gardening tools. The few tools in the school's possession were either broken or unsafe to use do to age.  The $500 grant from the MCFMA provided funds for a couple of wheel barrels, shovels, rakes, hoes, and small hand gardening tools, as well as trellises for vining plants. The school's first batch of produce yielded approximately 3 gallons of green beans, along with 5 green peppers, and the crop didn't stop there. This year, the school has received the FFA: Food For All Grant from National FFA Organization to help fight hunger, and the Monsanto Farmer's Choice Grant. Both grants will allow the FFA to expand their agricultural program, as well as their current growing season, which will directly impact hunger in the area through the FFA's donations to the local food pantry.

A similar grant was provided to Hope Gardens located at Mt. Gilead Church in Camby, Indiana. This community garden transforms plots of land, located behind the church, into crop yielding gardens for produce distribution to Churches In Mission in Mooresville.  These garden plots are maintained by volunteers from Mt. Gilead and the community.The garden that began in 2012 with 500 pounds of produce produced more than 2,400 pounds of produce during the 2014 growing season.

Market Hours

 


The Morgan County Farmers' Market includes locations in Mooresville and Martinsville, Indiana.

The Mooresville Market location for 2015 is located at the downtown Mooresville public parking lot on Indiana and Main Streets. The market is open on Tuesday evenings from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. starting May 5 and runs through Sept 22.

The Martinsville Market location is at the historic courthouse square. The market is open on Saturday mornings from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. starting May 9 to Sept 26.

Food Security & Sustainability



Farmers’ markets are one example of local food system practices that are directly tied to a location's social, economical, ethical and physical systems. Accordingly, the impacts and issues that surround a locale are respected and seen as parameters, instead of barriers, or in the case of long-distance, industrialized food production, merely overlooked.

Consequently, farmers’ markets encourage local food security through their promotion and support of local food production. The more food that is grown in Morgan County, the more residents will be buffered in the event of disruptions of long distance food supply caused by weather events or political instabilities.

Additionally, by reducing the distance that food is transported, farmers’ markets decrease “food miles." The distance food travels is directly related to the amount of fossil fuels required to get it there. Since fossil fuels cause pollution and directly impact climate change (Hegrl et al., 2006), reducing the distance that food travels translates into environmental and related socio-economic benefits (Link and Ling, 2007).

Why? Because, the farmers' market is an important space to connect within our community. People from all walks of life connect their purchases to an experience, as well as with one another. All of these connections promote the sense of place that is important for residents of Morgan County to feel anchored in this community (Darnton, 2012). And, when you connect people-to-people, local businesses generate 3.5 times more wealth for the local economy compared to money spent at a chain-owned business (Sustainable Cities Collective, 2013)
 

How Can I Make a Difference?

 

If every resident in Morgan County spent an extra $10 a month at a locally owned, independent

Think about it.

A small change could have a major impact for your community.
business it would generate more than $700,000 that would be directly returned to our economy every month.That's more than $8 million every year.

Want to do more?

 

Thanks to the generosity of the Lilly Endowment, all donations to the Morgan County Farmers' Market Association will be matched 50 cents on the $1! What does this mean for you? Simple, You donate $25, and the Lilly Endowment will match your donation with $12.50. Feeling generous? Donate $100, and the Lilly Endowment will match your gift with $50. 


For more information on the MCFMA visit their Facebook page or contact the board of directors via email.


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