The Difference Between Slaves and Refugees, Human Rights & Slave-Free Tomatoes

Black Cherry Tomatoes NR Refugees
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The other day, I was passing by one of my favorite market areas in a small stateside city.  The refugees were selling black cherry heirloom tomatoes.

I purchased a small basket full of the wine-colored fruits in order to bless their labor.  Several weeks ago, we wrote a post about slave-free tomatoes.      Buying heirloom tomatoes from local refugees while attempting to garden tomatoes in an area with several severe human rights violations – brought me to wondering…

What is the difference between the mindset of a slave… and a refugee?

Is a refugee someone who refused to BE a slave?  Or, is a slave simply a person that hasn’t ever been given an opportunity to – be free?

I started typing out a post about the differences that I’ve seen in working with people – who could be considered both – and hope to share it soon.

In the meantime, please keep reading below to understand our thoughts on slave-free tomatoes:

Heart healthy
Fresh Tomatoes | In The Village

“So, let me get this straight…”  I asked, continuing hesitantly –

“you mainly eat corn, onions, tomatoes and dark leafy greens.”

“Yes.”  Said the widow.

And you drink tea.

“Yes.”  She said.

“You know how to grow the corn, and the onions yourselves.”

“Yes.”  She said sternly.

“Do you know how to grow the tomatoes?”


“Where do the tomatoes come from?”

“I don’t know where they come from.”

“How do they get to the market?”

“I don’t know.”

“Are you allowed to grow tomatoes?”  I asked finally, trying to make sense of this situation.

The widow shuffled.  And hesitated.  “There are many things which we have not been taught to do properly.  They do get angry at those who grow different things from time to time.”

I knew from my food biology class that tomatoes were needed to fill the nutritional gap from the glucose in the corn.  The children would become quickly malnourished without the vitamins and nutrition present in a plant they were not able to produce for themselves.

Read Our Post On Tomatoes, Peppers & Onions | In A Village

Meaning — they had to have money in order to be healthy. 

“Do you know what the seed to a tomato looks like?”  I asked.

“Of course.”

There had to be at least twenty seeds in every tomato we purchased.

Twenty seeds that could produce 20 tomato plants.

Twenty tomato plants, that could yield about 15 pounds of food per plant.

Why were these people afraid to grow what it would take to keep their children from dying of hunger?

“Okay.  We are going to have to figure out how to grow tomatoes in pots.”

The people agreed.

-Check back in with us soon, we may have more posts and pictures of our tomato project, which is currently in progress:


Click Here For This Fresh Rainbow Salsa Recipe | Gimme Some Oven

Click here to read about Slave Free Tomatoes — rights for immigrant workers, and pick up some great tomato recipes!


Click here for the Rainbow Salsa Recipe (pictured above).

Make A General Donation To Support Our Cause | Pinteresting Against Poverty


Check out some of our other posts from this year:

We always appreciate your feedback and comments.  Please share your thoughts below.

Stay tuned for posts about some other seeds we’ve planted.




Author: Ada Nicole

A human rights worker in developing nations.

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