This past week I had my first visit into the field. I got to go with some of the other employees to the mountains. We went to an area of Romania that is close to Moldova and within the Carpathian Mountains.
The purpose of the visit was to do some preliminary work to prepare for a new project that Open Field’s is working on in coordination with the Romanian American Foundation. We spent two days visiting some producers that could be participating in this new project.
We visited a cheese factory, fish farm, and fish factory. We also toured a gorgeous new Bed and Breakfast that the owners’ of the fish factory had just finished, and stayed the night in another bed and breakfast that was decorated and built to represent the local heritage.
I got to see a lot of smaller villages and also witness first hand how agriculture really can improve livelihoods. The man who owned the fish farm was one of Open Field’s older projects. In 2007, he was given some small fish and a bag of fish food. Now he had several concrete ponds full of fish that he sells and cooks and serves in his own restaurant. He is also constructing a hotel on site because so many people come all the way to that village to eat at his restaurant.
I really enjoyed not only seeing how projects come together at Open Fields, but also getting to see the good that agriculture can do in a community.