Nick Pasqual (an excerpt)

Cultivating a Movement

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Read the excerpt (PDF) of the oral history with Nick Pasqual.

Many of our narrators mentioned Nick Pasqual, a Filipino immigrant. Nick is a pioneering organic farmer who helped found both the California Certified Organic Farmers, and the Live Oak Farmers’ Market at Green Acres School. Beginning in 1963, Nick sold vegetables (some of which he grew) at his stand in the Village Fair area of Aptos, California. His own vegetables were organic before the word was in popular or legal usage. When he had to close down the stand at the Village Fair, Nick helped organize the Live Oak Farmers’ Market and until very recently, Nick and his wife, Velma, sold vegetables at the Aptos Farmers’ Market at Cabrillo College. We had wanted to interview Nick, but he declined because of ill health (Nick is now in his late nineties). We are grateful to Allan Lönnberg of Cabrillo College, who granted us permission to reprint an excerpt of the transcript of the oral history he conducted with Nick in 2006; to Nick and Velma Pasqual who graciously agreed to the republication of this excerpt; and to Jerry Thomas, who called our attention to the existence of Lönnberg’s oral history with Pasqual. The complete oral history with Nick Pasqual, entitled A Very Rough Road: The Life of Nick Pasqual, is available in the Special Collections Department of the UCSC Library.