The Farm That Doesnít Exist

Critics say Target undercuts organic growers by pretending to be one of them

Those discounts may come at a price. Earlier this year, just months after the launch of the Archer Farms line, Target recalled the company's prepackaged four-cheese risotto after the FDA detected salmonella contamination, an increasingly familiar menace to industrial food producers.

A spokesperson for Target says the corporation maintains a network of suppliers to ensure flexibility when quality is compromised. A request for a list of those suppliers was denied on the grounds that such information "provides us a critical advantage in the marketplace."

These issues concern Hoag. Still, she argues that the opportunity her market provides for small farmers may not be sustainable without a sponsor like Target.

Craig Lassig
At the Mill City Market, Targetís signature red bullís-eye is drawing complaints from some local farmers

"We have a lot of wonderful dreams for this market, and we needed a Target," she says. "All of us had that same dream: a clean, organic place where people could come and have some sense of community. And we get up on that microphone every single Saturday and give our spiel: Support your local organic farmer."

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