We had the good fortune of connecting with Brian Coppom and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brian, what’s one piece of conventional advice that you disagree with?
You can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs. Wrong. This thinking makes us lazy by justifying negative outcomes. I’m confident we can do better. We don’t need to sacrifice our soil or water in order to grow food. We don’t need to sacrifice other people or our planet to live full lives.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Boulder County Farmers Markets is a nonprofit organization operating producer-only farmers markets in Colorado since 1987. Named one of America’s “Top 10 Farmers Markets” by USA TODAY (2015), BCFM’s mission is to support, promote and expand local agriculture, to make fresh products accessible to the community and to strengthen relationships between local food producers and food consumers. It is the oldest continually running ‘growers-only’ farmers’ market organization in Colorado. BCFM has four market locations in Boulder, Longmont, Denver, and Lafayette.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Consistent with my work and personal life, the itinerary would be centered around local food. We would start on the evening of my best friend’s arrival by washing away travel stress with pozole and margaritas at Summit Tacos in Longmont. High quality, delicious, thoughtful, and low-key. The rest of the week would include days of active outings in Rocky Mountain National Park, hiking the Mesa Trail, and a couple of volunteer days on area farms to get our hands in the dirt. I might even talk my friend Bob into hosting us for a Colorado rafting trip. Daytime eating would be lean in order to guarantee ready hunger to be unleashed on evenings spread between Bramble and Hare and The Post in Boulder, dinner at Fruition and Beast & Bottle in Denver, and a tour of local breweries with Brewhop Trolley. The goal will be a week filled with fresh air, local food, and plenty of Colorado personality.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’m certain any of the successes I have had are thanks mostly to the people around me- from my staff who are passionate and always ready for a new challenge, to the BCFM board who are supportive and, at times, very patient, To our partners and customers who share our values, and also some to luck. In particular, though, I owe many thanks to my wife, Nancy, for being willing to take this journey into the nonprofit-food-system-world with me. Changing industries meant making changes in our personal life, and she has been with me all the way. Her encouragement and belief gave me the space I needed to wholeheartedly commit myself to this work, and experience the fulfillment it has brought.