Meet Your Farmer: The Liar’s Table

The Liar’s Table Farm and Market resides in what was once an iconic greasy spoon in Elk Park, North Carolina in Avery County. The restaurant was home to the “Liars Table,” an open table where anyone could pull up a chair, order a cup of coffee, and be sure to hear some tall tales. Learn how farmers Amos and Kaci Nidiffer started their farm as a hobby and how it grew to support their community. “We hope that people will be able to access some fresh food, especially in Elk Park, we don’t have a grocery store. Our market is a lot more convenient for people,” said Kaci.

One of the many crops they grow is broccoli. Kaci explains that “broccoli is hard to find around Avery County. We grow sprouting broccoli, it’s a spring and fall crop. It is extremely flavorful, extremely tender. You can eat the whole plant, none of it goes to waste, from the stalk to the leaves! We love it, chefs love it, and our CSA (community supported agriculture) members love it. People who shop at our store love it, it’s kind of a treat.”

Food Security Resources

  • Food security is a growing issue in NC. Families are struggling to make ends meet and communities have tried to meet that need in a variety of ways. Each county is doing food outreach in a different way, and the YMCA of WNC is doing amazing things! Not only do they serve free meals for kids under the age of 18, but they also have a mobile food market that is offering free local produce and other nutritious foods from local farms, and local grocery stores. They also provide nutrition education, cooking demonstrations, and classes to support those with or at risk for diabetes through the Community Health department. For more information check out their website.
  • Fresh and Local for Everyone! Many farmers markets throughout the region accept SNAP/EBT. Some also offer SNAP incentive programs like Double SNAP or Double Up Food Bucks. Programs vary by market and may have caps or other restrictions. Check with individual markets to confirm details. 
  • As part of Farm Fresh for Health, ASAP (Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project) offers the Farm Fresh Produce Prescription. Participating healthcare providers can prescribe patients more fresh fruits and vegetables to help treat or prevent diet-related illness. Patients redeem their prescription at a local farmers market.
  • Manna FoodBank, located in Asheville, NC, links the food industry to over 200 partner pantries to get food to thousands of families’s tables in 16 counties of Western North Carolina, including the Qualla Boundary. For more information on their programs view here.

Childrens Literature:

  • Lulu and the Hunger Monster by Erik Talkin tells the story of when Lulu’s mother’s van breaks down, money for food becomes tight, and the Hunger Monster comes into their lives. Only visible to Lulu, Hunger Monster is a troublemaker who makes it hard for her to concentrate in school. How will Lulu help her mom and defeat the Monster when Lulu has promised never to speak the monster’s name to anyone? This realistic—and hopeful—story of food insecurity builds awareness of the issue of childhood hunger, increases empathy for people who are food insecure, and demonstrates how anyone can help end hunger. Lulu and the Hunger Monster empowers children to destigmatize the issue of hunger before the feeling turns into shame. Read aloud on YouTube.
    Author Erik Talkin shares how his nearly twenty years’ experience in fighting hunger in America and his work as CEO of the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County inspired him to write this story of a girl who takes on the Hunger Monster and wins! View here.
  • Harvesting Friends / Cosechando Amidos by Kathleen Contreras is the story of how young Lupe loves helping her mother with their salsa garden full of tomatoes, chile peppers, onions, garlic and cilantro. But one summer day, she sees that the biggest, juiciest tomatoes have disappeared! Who could have taken them?!?
    Read aloud on YouTube.
  • Grow Kind by Jon Lasser and Sage Foster-Lasser explains how Kiko, aided by her teenaged sister, Annie, and her dog, Chico, grows kind as they harvest fruits, flowers, and vegetables from their garden and shares them with others. Read aloud on YouTube.
  • Zora’s Zucchini by Katherine Pryor shares how the first zucchini of a summer garden is always exciting, but what happens when the plants just keep growing…and growing…and growing? Read aloud on YouTube.

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