(NAPSI)—American farmers are so efficient that even though they now comprise just 2 percent of the workforce, their efforts and advanced agricultural methods mean each can feed more than 150 people with one-third of their production exported to other countries.
While all that modern farm technology lets most Americans live in a land of great abundance, unfortunately, it also means many smaller, family-owned farms are displaced by agricultural corporations. It can also put a considerable distance between consumers and the soil in which their food is grown.
The good news is that in response, a strong grassroots movement encouraging individuals to “eat local” and thereby support small family farms has emerged and gained significant momentum nationwide. This has sparked a farmers market phenomenon sweeping the country.
The Internet is adding efficiency and increasing reach for that movement: One of the best efforts at aggregating and selling the offerings of nearby farms is being offered by online retailer Overstock.com. “There is no profession as noble and yet as at risk of extinction as that of the family farmer,” said Overstock.com CEO Patrick M. Byrne. In many communities, Overstock.com’s Farmers Market is the best connection people have to the food grown closest to them.
At the Overstock.com Farmers Market, users can search for and select from a broad range of locally grown artisan food products in much the same way one uses the site to shop for furniture or jewelry. Farm-fresh home delivery is free and speedy. Farmers are delivering the produce directly to the consumers, thereby ensuring the freshest, most nutritional food arrives on their doorstep. There are options for both single orders and recurring deliveries. Fresh produce, meat, eggs and bread can arrive on your doorstep every week, just when you need them.
What’s more, the compelling stories of many of the farmers themselves are told on the site, allowing visitors to feel a true connection to the people, as well as the products sold there. A range of recipes are featured for simple yet tempting comfort foods, made with the fresh ingredients purchased from Overstock.com.
In addition to a farmers market, the website’s Main Street Revolution store does the same thing for items crafted in the U.S.A., while the company’s fair trade division, known as Worldstock, sells the handcrafted products of artisans worldwide. There’s even a free pet adoption service available to accommodate visitors.