COVID-19 Response

Farmers Markets Physical Redesign for Covid-19 Mitigation Webinar (4/6/2020)

From the Farmers Market Coallition:

We had great attendance with a lot of lively discussion from the group. Hearing the inventive and efficient ways that markets have been handling this crisis has been inspirational and exciting. 

If you weren’t able to attend or would just like to watch again or share with a friend, you can find the recording of the webinar here: Meeting Recording

Also, we are still accepting responses to our form to collect information on what markets around the country are doing to mitigate the crisis, and questions for our panelists. You can submit your thoughts here: Questions and Ideas Form

Update 4-3-2020

Following Governor Inslee’s new stay at home order, the Vashon Farmers Market will continue to remain closed through May 4th. We ask you to consider supporting our local producers through farmstands, local restaurant delivery, other online retail venues and through selling or ordering on VashonFresh.com which is now open with Saturday and Wednesday deliveries and pick ups starting April 4th.

Recommendations are now shifting to increased recognition that homemade masks can have a significant impact on reducing the spread of viruses. VIGA has updated our safety protocols to reflect this new guidance; see attached. We recommend farmers wear masks when packaging and delivering products. We also recommend customers wear masks when in public. Thank you.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, VIGA’s goal is to move as much locally produced food as possible, to feed as many islanders as possible, and to provide our producers with the means to stay in business. We believe that in times like this our mission is more important than ever. 

The Vashon Island Growers Association supports growth of and access to locally produced food. As an association we are coming together to redouble our efforts for the good of our island community. These efforts are two-fold:  reimagining our marketplaces and supporting our neighbors with fresh, locally grown food while remaining adaptive and responsive to ever changing needs.

VIGA’s plan is as follows.

  • Suspend the Vashon Farmers Market until April 25th (and possibly longer). 
  • Vashon Fresh, VIGA’s online farmers market will open on April 4th.

    • Local farmers, crafters and prepared food makers can list their products on VashonFresh.com for online purchase. Need help? Please contact Dan Housholder at marketmanager@vigavashon.org or by phone at ‪(206) 778-8001. 
    • Islanders can order online at VashonFresh.com for Saturday or Wednesday home delivery or pick up at the Village Green (home of the farmers market).

  • VIGA will consolidate information about economic relief that our farmers and other vendors can apply for, along with other pertinent information. This information will be on our website, vigavashon.org, and will be updated as we gather it. We will continue to monitor and follow the guidelines issued by public health officials, state agencies and the Washington State Farmers Market Association.

Local farmers and crafters who depend on our market for a living are still here and need your support. Island grown products include vegetables, fruits, flowers, meat and dairy items, as well as the locally processed food and handcrafts you are used to getting at the farmers market. VIGA asks for your continued and expanded support of our islands’ growers and makers. Thank you!

VIGA’s Programs & Partnerships
Vashon Maury farmers and neighbors grow food; residents access food.

  • VIGA’s Food Access Partnership has a farm stand map online identifying farms that accept Food Access currencies. Paper copies of this map will be distributed beginning April 4, 2020.
  • VIGA Farm Bucks are vailable to community members via their partner organizations (listed below). If you have questions or need help, please call VIGA’s google voice number at: (206) 778-8001. EBT cards can be used to get tokens and SNAP Market Match bucks at the Vashon Fresh pickup at the Village Green.
  • VIGA’s vendor map is available on the VIGA website which includes a comprehensive list of our vendors.
  • VIGA’s Get Growing program will offer resources and educational opportunities to increase home food production. Consider growing more food in your garden to support your household and potentially some of your neighbors as well. More information will be forthcoming at http://vigavashon.org/educate-e/.
  • VIGA is asking that you consider growing an extra row or an extra flat of starts for the Vashon-Maury Food bank. If you are interested in growing but don’t have knowledge please reach out to VIGA at info@vigavashon.org. If you want to grow a row, grow starts for, or receive starts from the Food Bank to please contact Abby Findley at harvest@vashonfoodbank.org.
  • VIGA plans to organize educational support, farm volunteers, and farm stand cooperative selling efforts. If you are interested in volunteering for anything surrounding our Food System on Vashon-Maury, please email jwfarm01@gmail.com, treasurer@vigavashon.org and we will get back to you shortly.

The safety of our community is at the forefront of all these efforts.
We will continue to monitor and follow local, state, and national recommendations.

What you can do?

  • Stay safe
  • Participate as a vendor, or a consumer at Vashon Fresh.com
  • Visit local farm stands
  • Volunteer – help VIGA help Vashon. Get in touch at vigavashon.org.
  • Donate to VIGA’s action plan at vigavashon.org:
    • Mail a check to PO Box 2894, Vashon, WA 98070
    • Use PayPal
    • Donate specifically to the Food Access Partnership

If you need service, please contact one of our outstanding community partners!

  • The Senior Center
  • The Community Dinners program
  • The Interfaith Council to Prevent Homelessness (IFCH)
  • La Comunidad
  • Vashon Youth and Family Services (VYFS)
  • The DOVE Project
  • Vashon Community Care Center
  • The Vashon Maury Community Food Bank
  • Vashon HouseHold