The Greenville Earth Market in Upstate, South Carolina, was approved as the first Earth Market in the United States in September 2011. Inaugurated on May 19, 2011, it is held on the third Thursday of each month on the lawn outside the McDunn Gallery of fine arts and craft.
Greenville is the largest city in the Upstate region, and with a strong local agriculture sector ten farmers' markets have already been established in the metropolitan area alone. Around a dozen producers are participating in the new Earth Market, offering a range of products: fresh produce typical to southern American farming such as zucchini, cabbage and okra; heritage varieties of tomatoes, peppers and legumes; honey from local flowers; and meat from sustainable breeding operations.
Many foods listed on the Ark of Taste are available, including meat from several local breeds, including Navajo Churro sheep, Pineywoods cattle and Ossabaw Island hog, and all the producers come from the state of South Carolina, or whithin a 150 miles radius.
To many, Greenville is known as the buckle on ‘the Bible belt' of the south and many people who live in the area believe in food products produced with very clean all natural methods because of their faith that food should be as nature intended. To many others, Greenville is known as a city of art, boasting nearly 200 practicing artists, and a city where many environmentally aware organizations reside to promote nature preserves, clean water systems, bike trails, and sustainable building projects. So many people who live there support environmentally friendly lifestyles. With these populations, the Earth Market has a vast and diversified system of support, both conservative and liberal, and everywhere in between.
Each edition of the market features a local artist or craftsperson, who will present their work on the theme of food.
Slow Food Upstate Convivium manages the market and oversaw the strict selection process of stallholders. In an area where GM crops are common, particular attention was paid to animal feed used in production. Numerous candidates were excluded because of their use of GM feed, however some of these farmers are already taking steps to change their production to exclusively non-GM and may join the market in the future.
Upstate Earth Market
741 Rutherford Rd. at North Main St. Greenville, SC 29609
Third Thursday of every month, 3pm until 7pm
Contact: Janette Wesley - firstname.lastname@example.org