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Inaugural farmers market makes fresh impression

Photo by Mike Mazzanti.

Some of the freshest fruits and vegetables in Boston could be found at Northeastern University on Wednesday, when the campus’s first-ever farmers market was held on Centennial Common.

“Everything here was harvested this morning or yesterday afternoon,” said Ashley Howard, who owns Heavens Harvest Farm, an organic farm in western Massachusetts. The fresh produce available elsewhere “doesn’t even come close to this,” said Howard, naming a well-known high-end supermarket chain.

Howard was happy to give students access to fresh, healthy produce, which, he said, could be difficult to find in Boston.

“No one wants to think about it when they’re this age, but when you’re 18, 19, 20, that’s when you’re forming habits that will be with you the rest of your life,” Howard said.

Students — who grazed on fresh tomatoes, juicy blueberries and leafy green vegetables before the farm stand had even opened for business — purchased much of Heavens Harvest’s stock by the end of the afternoon.

“We knew this was something students were really excited for,” said Dylan O’Sullivan, a senator in the Student Government Association who worked with Student Affairs, the Progressive Student Alliance and the Husky Energy Action Team to bring the farmers market to campus.

Organizers hope to increase the number of vendors who sell their goods on campus each week, from now until October, when the harvest season winds down.

O’Sullivan also hopes the farmers market will give Northeastern’s neighbors in Roxbury a healthy — and tasty — alternative to regular supermarket produce.

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