For the second year in a row, Youth Farm and Market Project, the Riverview Economic Development Association, and El Burrito Mercado have teamed up to bring locally-grown organic produce to Saint Paul residents. The project, made possible by a generous grant from Ecolab, promises to engage youth, nourish Saint Paul’s families and keep money in the local economy.
Youth Farm and Market Project, a Twin Cities-based organization focused on connecting urban youth with their families, communities, and the earth through growing, cooking, and selling healthy food, initiated the project for the summer of 2008. Peppers, tomatillos, cucumbers, and other items grown on the West Side of Saint Paul will be harvested by youth in the morning, transported by bicycle to El Burrito Mercado, and available for purchase by mid-afternoon each week.
Youth are involved in every step of the process, from planting the seeds to creating the selling price and delivering the produce. From the project, youth gain an understanding of the food supply and develop their entrepreneurial skills. Meanwhile, Saint Paul residents have access to high-quality vegetables with a low environmental impact.
The project strives to keep money in the local economy by selling the produce at El Burrito Mercado, a pillar of the West Side business community.
El Burrito Mercado will host a happy hour kick off on August 4. Appetizers will be provided and individuals can learn more about this program and get a first look at the produce available.
The produce, available now, will continue to be available through the summer and into early fall.