This Read more [...]
Largest Local and Organic Market in SMA
Ancha de San Antonio 123 (Old Don Pedro’s)
Store hours, 7 days, 8am-8pm
Parking and Wifi available
Organic Mercado Sano Opens
written by: Amy Cotler email@example.com
On October 1st at 9 am the largest organic market/store in San Miguel, Mercado Sano, opens its doors at the old Don Pedro hardware store on the Ancho de San Antonio. The store provides a one-stop shop, with a dizzying array of local, natural and artisanal foods and groceries to savor there or take out. But Mercado Sano isn’t just about good food and provisions; it seeks to become community hub, taking the local food movement to the next level.
This starts with transparency. Beginning with the fruit vendors, consumers will know where their food comes from and how it was produced. The store aspires to post profiles of all the vendors, including photos of the producers and production and maps of their location. Consumers will shop directly from vendor-producers rather than “middle men,” buying quality products while doing the right thing too — supporting and boosting the local economy’s farmers, artisan producers and entrepreneurs.
Community support and inclusion helped launch the market. From its inception, the generous Don Petro family leased their store to local vendors, 90% of whom are Mexican, rather than sell yet another luxury hotel venture. The store is managed communally. The rent is shared by its vendors, the market run by a burgeoning vendor steering community.
Inclusion means keeping prices reasonable, so everyone can afford good, fair and clean food. “Our policy is to encourage competition to bring prices down. That’s what the organic movement needs. One of my organic lettuce varieties sells for 7 pesos less the than the mega!” says Luc Monzies founder of Mercado Sano. (As well as one of the founders of the Tanguis Tosma.)
Competition and inclusion, includes locals like the tamale guy out front. He’ll remain there, working in with Mente Cacao, one of the store’s chocolate vendors, who will provide cacao husks for his atole. Often marginalized local farmers will also be bringing produce to sell in the front of the store. And Jorge Catalan, of the wildly popular 12-year old Natura, will have a strong presence, as well serving on the steering committee.
The building walks the sustainable talk too, featuring reused water bottles for lights, recycled fibers and woods as much as possible for vendor stands and décor, Not a faceless enterprise, locals will likely recognize many vendors, 20 from the Saturday Tanguis Tosma. The first floor will feature GMO and Organic popcorn popped on site, natural health and beauty products, grocery and food relate items, like kitchen supplies and produce from local vendors, as well as a Café, bakery, and, in deference to the indigenous foods of Mexico, a Agua Miel bar, with the beverage make fresh daily. (Outside they will be a small nursery, also selling compost.)
Walk down the stairs (or ramp) to six international “delicatessen” counters with local cheeses, mushrooms and regional fishes, as well as the Natura Store. At the back sits Bodega Organca’s organic juice and salad bar (the first in San Miguel). A long refrigerator with season organic produce from Bodega Organica flanks the entire back wall.
A mini international food court crowns the second floor’s center, accompanied with live piano music (and they’ll be plenty of music elsewhere too). Taste fresh local and organic tortillas hot off the comal, savor artisanal chocolate manufactured on premises, lunch at the Italian pasta bar or at Sushi and Raman Noodle station. Or take international cooking classes.
Sala Semilla — a place for workshops, bunch and cultural events — sits to one side of the food court. To the other there’s a lounge for community members with the lending library for books and seeds — the first seed bank in San Miguel. The small membership fee includes discounts on events and access to the books and a seeds lending library where you can check out seeds to grow, trading the new seeds from the harvest. This important enterprise is part of an international movement to preserve and regenerate our biodiversity.
Mercado Sano also serves as a home base for other kindred organizations, including the new chapter of the international Slow Food movement , the newly formed chef’s association and the 50 year old SMA Audubon Society (fact check). “More than a place to shop for fresh, healthy food and green products, Mercado Sano is a center for community engagement. Audubon de Mexico is excited to be a part of of this collaborative movement toward a sustainable community. It’s going to be very alive and dynamic,” says April Gaydos, Mercado Sano is a center for community engagement. Audubon de Mexico is excited to be a part of of this collaborative movement toward a sustainable community. It’s going to be very alive and dynamic,” says April Gaydos, President, Audubon de México.
Mercado Sano stands on t