The 7th annual Harvest Moon Local Festival was another great success with 48 booths,cooking demonstrations, kids’ activities, the ever-popular Fermentation Station, live music, juggling and story-telling, the first ever Harvest Moon Pie Baking Contest and 3000+ visitors! Check out this great coverage and photo essay by Brian Mazurek at the Peninsula Clarion: https://www.peninsulaclarion.com/news/pies-produce-and-pickling/
Kenai Soil & Water Conservation District partners with Kenai Local Food Connection to publish and distribute the annual update of The Kenai Loves Local Food Directory. By the end of April, you’ll be able to find the directory at libraries, visitors centers and local food businesses from Nikiski to Homer. Call Kenai Soil & Water for additional copies: (907) 283-8732 x 5.
Alaska Food Hub
Wednesdays, May – October
Locations in Homer (from May 1), Soldotna (from May 15), Seldovia (from May 22)
Robbi Mixon, 907-235-4068 x 23 www.alaskafoodhub.org
Kenai Peninsula Food Bank Farmers Market
Tuesday, 3 – 6 pm, June 11 – September 10
K-Beach Rd. at Community College Dr.
Homer Farmers Market
Wednesday, 2 – 5 pm, Saturday, 10 am – 3 pm
May 25 – Sept . 28
Ocean Drive, across from The Washboard
Robbi Mixon, 299-7540 www.homerfarmersmarket.org
Ninilchik Farmers Market
Sunday, 1 – 5 pm
June 2 – July 28
Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds
Tiffany Sherman, 907-567-3670 www.ninilchikfarmersmarket.com
Soldotna Saturday Farmers Market (the area’s oldest farmers market)
Saturday, 10 am – 2 pm, June 1 – Sept. 28
Kenai Spur Hwy at E. Corral Ave
Elaine & Bill Howell, 907-394-2175 Facebook page
Soldotna Wednesday Market
Wednesday, 11 am – 6 pm, June 5 – Aug. 28
Soldotna Creek Park
Annette Villa, 907-252-7264 www.soldotnawednesdaymarket.com
Additional information for Kenai Peninsula farmers at http://kenaisoilandwater.org/projects/kenaifarmcentral/
Calling all farmers, fishers, local food business and local food supporters! Sign up today to list your business or organization in the 2019 Kenai Loves Local Food Directory! Choose your level of support: individual business ($25), farmers market ($75) or directory sponsor ($150, includes logo and business listing if desired). You’ll find registration and payment info here.
(Anchorage, Alaska) May 2015 – The Alaska Farm Bureau announces the $5/Week Alaska Grown Challenge – a statewide campaign to increase consumer spending on Alaska Grown products with the goal of strengthening local economies and increasing Alaska’s food security.
The Kenai Peninsula Chapter of the Alaska Farm Bureau, in partnership with the Kenai Soil and Water Conservation District and several other local organizations, launched the $5/Week Alaska Grown Challenge on May 5, in honor of Alaska Agriculture Day. Now the Challenge is going statewide with the help of social media, Farm Bureau chapters and local food advocates across the state. …
Read the full press release and sign up for Challenge: http://www.alaskafb.org/take-
Farmers market roundtable provides networking and education
Alaska not only presents farmers with different growing conditions than the Lower 48, but different market conditions as well. A workshop held on Wednesday at Kenai’s Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association building invited prospective farmers on the Kenai Peninsula to learn about both.
Organizer Heidi Chay of the Kenai Soil and Water Conservation District said that the workshop, entitled “Scaling Up: Ready for the Farmer’s Market,” was aimed at hobbyists looking to become business owners.
“What we’re seeing is that all of the markets could use more vendors, and that there’s a lot of demand for local food,” Chay said. “The thrust of this event is to inspire those successful gardeners and high tunnel growers who are already scaling up and giving away food to their friends and family to think about becoming vendors.”
Workshop attendee Chelsea Holsonbeke is one such successful grower.
“We put in our own home-built high tunnel last year, and we did a bunch of preliminary experiments just to see what we could grow really well, and we were really successful, grew way more than we could eat, and decided that this year we’re going to look into making a business, going to farmer’s markets,” Holsonbeke said.
Although Holsonbeke has grown vegetables for personal use, she’s never grown commercially.
“We’ll see how this year goes, and if it’s really successful we’ll consider expanding,” Holsonbeke said. “Last year it was a hobby. This year it’s going to be serious.”
Chay encouraged gardeners like Holsonbeke by bringing together seven speakers, who presented on subjects ranging from practicalities like signage and booth display to food safety, how to use food assistance programs like SNAP and EBT, and the results of a 2013-2014 survey of Farmer’s Markets.