You made a farmer very happy this summer, and it’s someone other than Farmer Rob! I tagged along with Rob this weekend as he made his trip to our Osoyoos orchard to pick up apples and collect tomatoes, pears and plums from other farmers in the area. I had the pleasure of meeting Roy Avila, one of the Oliver tomato growers we purchase from. While helicopters and water bombers whirred overhead, still working at trying to douse the pesky Testalinda Forest Fire, Roy expressed his deep gratitude at being able to sell his sun-kissed field tomatoes to markets such as ours rather than being forced to sell to a produce wholesaler. He knows that you, our customers, understand and appreciate the value of locally grown produce and can overlook the occasional blemish on Mother Nature’s products. His calloused, dirt-stained hands held up three beautiful tomatoes, all of which he said would have rejected, and dumped, by a produce wholesaler. One had a small black spot, one wasn’t perfectly round and one had a small split in the crown. Judging by the positive feedback I received from my email about the “less than perfect cherries”, I know that the food wastage problem our society has created because of our demand for perfect looking food angers you as much as it does me. Thank you for embracing the not-so-perfectly shaped fruits and veggies, for being willing to cut out the occasional blemish, for enjoying our unwaxed orchard apples, but mostly, our deep gratitude for supporting our farm, and so many hard-working and dedicated BC farmers like Roy through your visits to Lepp Farm Market.