South West Health opening Farmer’s Market

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Yarmouth regional hospital. Tina Comeau photo

Beginning Thursday, Aug. 5, South West Health will launch a partnership with the Tri-County Local Food Network to sell a selection of locally, sustainably grown produce.

 “This partnership will allow us to feature a unique selection of locally grown produce and to promote different varieties, like heritage vegetables,” says Patti Simpson, director, South West Health Food and Nutrition Services. “It will also allow us to promote to our 1,000-plus staff and physicians the benefits of eating five to 10 servings of vegetables a day,” she adds.

 “This is a great opportunity for health care providers to ensure they are taking good care of their own health by eating healthy,” says Blaise MacNeil, CEO, South West Health.

 “Local growers love to promote their products and our colleagues in health are working to promote healthy eating by modeling healthy habits.  It’s a perfect marriage,” adds Natalie Smith, Tri-County Local Food Network.

The market, located in the Yarmouth Regional Hospital cafeteria, will open on Aug. 5 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will be offered at the same times on the following dates:  Aug. 19, Sept. 9, Sept. 23, Oct. 7 and Oct. 21.

The market, located in the Yarmouth Regional Hospital cafeteria, will open on Aug. 5 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will be offered at the same times on the following dates: Aug. 19, Sept. 9, Sept. 23, Oct. 7 and Oct. 21.

 Although the target audience for the market is employees and physicians of South West Health, members of the public are welcome to stop by.  Recipe suggestions will be provided as ideas for preparing vegetables. Safe handling suggestions will also be provided, such as ensuring produce is washed before use.

Produce for the farmer’s market is intended to be taken home, washed and prepared there.  Due to food handling restrictions in health care, locally grown produce can only be accepted via an organization like the Tri-County Local Food Network, which manages produce in ways recommended by the Department of Agriculture. Produce must be received through hospital food and nutrition services, kept separate from patient food stores and must arrive to the hospital pre-packaged and priced.

Leftover produce will be featured in a special item on the hospital cafeteria menu. Selection and prices at the market will vary with the season; expect prices to be higher at the beginning and end of the growing season for each product.

 

Organizations: South West Health Food and Nutrition Services, Tri-County Local Food Network, Yarmouth Regional Hospital Department of Agriculture

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