Chatting with a Vendor: René Gelder


René Gelder of Ellis Family Farms shares her favorites and tips for shopping the market. René and Bruce Gelder are responsible for the family’s 56-acre farm, but the whole family helps with selecting fruit varieties, planting, and harvesting. René specializes in Integrated Pest Management systems and sustainable practices. The family grows asparagus, rhubarb, strawberries, cherries, apricots, blueberries, raspberries (red, black, and golden), blackberries, nectarines, peaches, apples, grapes, pears, and chestnuts to sell at Green City Market year-round. Come visit them at the indoor market this season! (Pictured, from left standing  are Laura, Marc, Mathew, Christina and Mary.  Seated from left are Rene' and Bruce.)

What is your favorite crop that you grow?

Spring: asparagus and strawberries; Summer: tomatoes and peaches; Autumn; Cinderella pumpkins and fall raspberries; Winter: stored vegetables (I can during the seasons) and apples.

What is your favorite thing to do in Chicago?

I love visiting with friends.

What is in your fridge right now?

Apples, pears, cranberries, cabbage, and brussels sprouts. Of course, Mary's eggs.

What is one tip you have for shoppers at Green City Market?

To encourage shoppers to continually support the farmers even in winter. And a reminder that unless it's fresh greens many of the items that they find were harvested and are stored under the best possible conditions. That way it ensures consumers full enjoyment.

What is the one food you couldn't live without?
Cheese and yogurt.

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