CUESA is the organization that oversees the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. In addition to the tasks involved with market oversight, CUESA also leads educational programs, farm tours, and farm trips.
Farm tours have a couple of advantages. Farmers are extremely busy people, and it maximizes their time to be able to give a tour to twenty interested folks instead of having to give that tour many times. To me, this is the main benefit -- I'm normally too conscious of farmers' time to call them up and ask for a solo farm tour. Also, pooling resources to rent a bus, carpool, and save gas and energy is important -- especially when getting to far-reaching farms.
I've never taken a CUESA tour that I didn't think was worthwhile.
This weekend, CUESA is running a tour to a couple of our most interesting farms. Massa Organics is a local brown rice vendor. Not only is the rice delicious, but the rice growing process is fascinating and the Massas are extremely committed to sustainable processes. Ever since Massa Organics' rice started showing up at farmers markets in the past couple years, I've been very curious to see the Massa farm.
Woodleaf Farm is a local stone fruit vendor who suffered a devastating crop loss this year to a freeze. It's a perfect time to visit the farm and hear about how farmer Carl Rosato changed his farm focus for the summer and sold vegetables instead of fruit.