The Sum­mer of Love was a social phe­nom­e­non that occurred dur­ing the sum­mer of 1967. As many as 100,000 peo­ple, con­verged in San Francisco’s Haight-​Ashbury dis­trict.

Tie-​dyed cloth­ing, love beads, men with long hair and a mantra of “free love” char­ac­ter­ized the coun­ter­cul­ture hip­pie groups that flocked to the city. A swirl of art, pol­i­tics, music and rev­o­lu­tion was in the air in 1967.

Among other notable shifts in tra­di­tions, this was the period in time that influ­enced our cul­ture in the food move­ment and pol­i­tics toward nat­ural, organic and veg­e­tar­ian diets in Amer­ica.

The pol­i­tics of food remain cen­tral to those con­ver­sa­tions hap­pen­ing in Cal­i­for­nia regard­ing organic farm­ing, sus­tain­abil­ity, improv­ing child­hood nutri­tion and the obe­sity epi­demic.

Present day activism rises from the national trend toward local, sus­tain­able and con­scious eat­ing. Con­sumers want to know what they’re eat­ing, where it comes from and how it is pro­duced.

Lucky for us then that locally grown actu­ally means we’re able to enjoy mel­ons, stone fruits, sweet corn, beans, pep­pers, toma­toes and pota­toes that are actu­ally grown and har­vested close by.

Farms and ranches flank our dis­tri­b­u­tion facil­ity from West Sacra­mento to the San Joaquin County.

Farm­ers’ mar­kets abound in Cal­i­for­nia. There are about 800 cer­ti­fied farm­ers’ mar­kets and approx­i­mately 2,500 cer­ti­fied Cal­i­for­nia pro­duc­ers.

Of these mar­kets, 50 per­cent are year-​round mar­kets with the bal­ance being sea­sonal. In a typ­i­cal year, the major­ity of the sea­sonal mar­kets oper­ate from April through Octo­ber.

Retail gro­cers and food­ser­vice oper­a­tors, includ­ing schools, are avid sup­port­ers of locally grown, Cal­i­for­nia pro­duced fruits, veg­eta­bles, nuts flow­ers, plants and honey.

This by-​product of the “sum­mer of love” gen­er­a­tion has inspired hun­dreds of sto­ries about those fam­i­lies and part­ners who grow our food. They tell us about land pur­chases, sus­tain­able agri­cul­tural prac­tices, con­ser­va­tion and fair employ­ment.

Build­ing com­mu­nity was a theme in 1967. That stands true today on the 50th anniver­sary for baby boomers enchanted by the “Sum­mer of Love”.

Cel­e­brate the days of sum­mer with a nod to the farm­ers and fam­i­lies bring­ing real foods to the table. From hip­pies to hip­sters, farm­ers need the sup­port. Eat­ing local makes the connection.