Dadiri Nuro & Katie Painter, Global Gardens

Dadiri Nuro

Katie Painter

Popular as they have become, farmers markets still must fight the perception they are places reserved for the affluent. One vendor trying to lead the way in dispelling that myth is Global Gardens, where vegetables are grown and sold by members of Idaho’s refugee community on two plots of land in Eagle and near Star.

“This is the healthy food so we didn’t use any chemicals. I can say it’s fresh.”
--Dadiri Nuro

Dadiri Nuro, a Somali refugee and one of the producers behind Global Gardens, says prices at the market are often comparable or even better than what people can buy at the store. He told Outdoor Idaho he believes their presence at the Capitol City Public Market offers visitors a sense of the culture many of his fellow refugees left behind.

“This farm makes us happy. There was farming before (in our homeland). Here we don’t want to be like a couch potato, so we need to work out how they can go to the field. Also our kids, they don’t know how to farm because some they just born in the refugee camp. They don’t know how to farm so we take them there to the farm to show them how they can plant things. So that farm gives us a big opportunity.”
--Dadiri Nuro

As the refugees work to re-build their lives through growing local produce, they also shed light on the reality that many Idahoans are struggling to buy food. In 2009, Global Gardens became the first vendor at the market to accept food stamps.

One year later, the idea has expanded to include vendors throughout the rest of the market. Read an Idaho Statesman story about this issue.

“We just really want to make sure everyone feels welcome here, and accepting food stamps is one important way of doing that.”
--Katie Painter

Find more information on how food stamps work at the Capitol City Public Market.