Nicolas and Norma Amaro, hailing originally from Mexico, launched N&N Amaro Produce in 2006 through Adelante Mujeres’ organic farming training program. Adelante Mujeres is a non-profit organization in Forest Grove, Oregon that pursues the education and empowerment of Latina women and their families. Nicolas and Norma decided to enter the program because they were interested in growing their own fruits and vegetables and they wanted to learn how do to so without using chemicals. Through this program they received training in organic farming, access to a plot of land in Forest Grove and a booth at the Forest Grove Farmers Market. With this support and their hard work Nicolas and Norma were able to launch their farming business.
Over the years they have continued to grow, both their business and their skills as farmers. In 2008, they moved off their small plot in Forest Grove, to their apartment complex in Hillsboro. Although farming at an apartment complex may seem counter-intuitive, it’s just an example of this couple’s creativity and perseverance. When they started looking for land of their own, they noticed that there was a ¼-acre empty lot behind their apartment covered in blackberry bushes. They approached their landlord to see if they could use this land for their business, and he agreed. Now four years later they have converted their porch into a greenhouse and have fully developed their land, allowing them to grow a variety of produce and even raise chickens for fresh eggs. N&N Amaro is a great example of a new type of farming business that challenges traditional assumptions and embodies the creative spirit of entrepreneurship.
Nicolas and Norma’s business has continued to grow and develop over the years. They are now a cornerstone vendor at the Forest Grove Farmers market and have expanded their presence into Portland at the Hollywood and Lents markets. When asked about their favorite product to grow and sell Nicolas responded, “I like growing everything including melons and watermelons, which can be challenging to grow in this region.” In addition to the usual farmers market produce, they also grow and sell more unique items: Mexican produce, herbs such as epazote and papalo, dried chili peppers, and dried fava beans. They are dedicated to providing their customers with quality produce and educating them in the importance of sustainable agriculture.
This is the first season for N&N Amaro Produce at the Hollywood Farmers Market and they look forward to sharing their produce with our shoppers and use it has an opportunity to improve and grow their business.