Sunday, February 13, 2011

A brief pseudo-ethnography of farmers' markets

This is an entry for my market friends at home.  As most of you know, I'm part of the Ithaca Farmers' Market and therefore have a certain fondness for this genre of food shopping.  Thailand is full of markets of various kinds, from the tourist-ridden weirdo Night Bazaar to the local farmers sitting by the side of the road with their basket of papayas.  Here in Chiang Mai we tend to get our food for the house primarily at the market down the road (pummelos, cashews, eggs, spices, greens, kilos of passionfruit, fresh orange juice, snacks wrapped in banana leaves, etc etc)....I often walk there in the afternoons after leaving the ISDSI office.  I also love strolling the Sunday evening Walking Street market downtown, about a kilometer of road closed to traffic and completely packed with art and craft and food vendors. It's so fun.  Even though I come from the other side of the world, I feel a certain solidarity with the vendors at these places, setting up their displays and being nice to customers and answering questions and hoping to make a living...I know what that's like.

There's a mix of people at all of these markets...some seem to be peddling items that were made or grown elsewhere, but some people are definitely there with their own produce or art/craft.

Here's a couple of photos of farmers' markets.  The first is the Je-je Market, a small organic market which is open two days per week...we go on Saturday morning and stock up in an attempt to limit exposure to the otherwise ubiquitous chemicals.  The second is just a nice shot of a bountiful display of tropical vegetables available at the market that's open every day down on the east side of the old city near the moat (there's also a noodle vendor there, which has been my source for fresh wide rice noodles as I continue the quest to make my own pad see eu).


Brewers Union Local 180 said...

Are there any sorts of competitions that feature vegetables?

BSOB said...

Glorious! Yummo! whats the deal with organic products there? r they available or its not really a thing yet?