Eva Rehak and Rebekah Frazer Chiasson are members of Coin Bio – that’s Organic Corner in English – a small marketing co-op at the Dieppe Farmers Market in Dieppe, New Brunswick. With a total of four farms, the Organic Corner co-op allows these farmers to show up at market with the greatest diversity of produce in southeastern New Brunswick.
Eva and Rebekah share the details of how they make the co-op work, including how they decide who sells what and how they structure the finances to keep the cooperative operating and vital. We also dig into how they resolve and avoid conflict within the venture, and the attitude and approach that make Organic Corner a positive experience for farmers and customers alike.
We also discuss the realities of raising families on the farm, and the political activism they’ve participated in around childcare subsidies in New Brunswick.
The Farmer to Farmer Podcast is generously supported by Vermont Compost Company.
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Quotes from the Show
[Rebekah, quoting Eva] Our role as a co-op is to help Ferme Terre Partagée reach their full potential. That was like wow. You can't do anything but trust these people if that's really one of this co-op’s goals.
[Eva] It touches me that I want my kids to not necessarily follow in my footsteps… but just to have this life and to see and to have that option, to have that opportunity so for me it's just a big part.
[Eva] We're still standing. We are sometimes sweating but we're still standing and another year is coming.
[Eva] We don't want the friendship to get in the way but I think that's also something that helps with the communication.
[Rebekah] Sometimes some of the things that we've found challenging like quality control, standardization; it's easy to get frustrated if there's a farm you think isn't following in line but when you really remember who that person is and what they're contributing to the co-op... it’s just something that has to be addressed and it’s nothing more than that.
Eva and Rebekah both agree that the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) is one of the best resources for farming and farm-business information. (And I would agree!)