We’re thrilled to announce that the Bowdoin Geneva Farmers Market was selected as one of nine markets citywide to participate in Mayor Menino’s “first-of-its-kind pilot program that will put local, day-boat fish at Farmers’ Markets around the city.” Red’s Best Seafood and Cape Cod Fish Share are the two fish vendors who will be serving up fresh-caught fish in markets throughout Boston’s neighborhoods including: Dorchester, East Boston, Mattapan, South Boston, and of course at several Downtown markets.
The pilot is viewed as a way to drive traffic to these neighborhood markets to help build their customer base and improve the financial equation not just for the fishermen, but for their farmer counterparts. This effort serves to strengthen the markets and promotes their long-term sustainability, helping them to better serve the communities across Boston in which they are situated. For us in Bowdoin Geneva – with our high concentration of folks from Cape Verde and other islands and coastal areas around the globe – we hope that fish will help to drive our success this season.
In addition to serving existing produce farmers and the customers of Bostons’ farmers markets, the pilot serves to promote sustainable fishing practices in the waters off Massachusetts shores by putting the fishermen themselves in direct contact with their consumers. Plus, the direct marketing relationship helps the fishermen get a fair price for their products – much as it does for local farmers. Rather than paying “middlemen” like warehouse facilities, truckers, and wholesalers, the farmers market vendor takes home almost 100% of what they charge at the market – allowing them to keep their prices affordable while paying the bills. In the words of Jared Aurbach, founder of Red’s Best, selling at farmers markets means that fishermen “put in extra care toward the handling of their fish since they are fairly compensated for their efforts to fish responsibly and sustainably.”
Boston Bounty Bucks – which allow EBT users to double their dollar on purchases up to $20 – can be used to purchase fish at the farmers market. Here at the BGFM, we’ll also be accepting credit and debit cards for the first time this year, so no need to lug all your cash to the market to buy all the wonderful treats we have in store for you!
Our thanks go out to the Mayor’s Office of Food Initiatives, the Boston Collaborative for Food and Fitness, the Inspectional Services Department, plus all the fishermen, market managers, and community advocates who helped bring this pilot into being.