ST THOMAS — “Farming to Preserve Our Culture” is the slogan for We Grow Foods Inc., an organization that has helped to provide the community with fresh and healthy food since 1993. Since their inception, their mission has been to preserve and promote agricultural production in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Thanks to this organization, the remote west end of St. Thomas in Estate Bordeaux is home to the bimonthly Bordeaux Farmers Market, where local farmers sell their fresh-grown harvest while vendors sell a variety of handmade items. Known as the “2nd and Las’ Sunday Farmers Market,” visitors can expect a variety of produce and value-added products such as locally grown fruits and vegetables, snacks and local prepared foods, arts and crafts vendors, agricultural demonstrations, and sometimes even live music. Sugar cane, bananas, breadfruit, okra, tomato, and spinach are a sampling of the delicious crops one would likely find within the market’s brightly colored stalls. Vibrant with colors such as red, yellow, and green, each farmer’s stand is adorned with African symbols and sayings, which represent decades of cherished memories and cultural traditions.
For visitors to the island, the market is a fantastic local cultural experience. Set in a lush natural environment, this familyfriendly market is where one can enjoy the relaxed and natural atmosphere on the less-frequented west end while sharing healthy and homegrown food, fun, and music with the local island community. Additionally, there are several opportunities to interact with the farmers themselves at the market. Many of them are known as caretakers of the land, dedicating their time from sunrise to sunset to work the soil in preparation for future harvests.
Bordeaux Farmers Market is held at Rothschild Francis Market Square in Estate Bordeaux. To get there, take Route 30/Brewers Bay Road, which becomes Fortuna Road past the University of the Virgin Islands campus. Continue past the Reichhold Center for the Arts, and drive a couple more miles to the top of the hill to Estate Bordeaux. The market is approximately one half-mile past the fire and rescue station on the right.
For more information, visit the We Grow Food Inc. website at www.wegrowfoodinc.org, or give them a call at 340.727.6684.
Written by Anquanette Gaspard