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Subject: Russian green campaigners give grandmas a boost

Written By: Philip Eno on 09/09/15 at 9:03 am

A Russian campaign to help elderly women who eke out a living selling food from their allotments is attracting lots of online support.

The green movement Rodovid is calling on the public to buy the garden produce that pensioners sell on street corners, using the hashtag #‏kupiubabki - "buy from granny", the Komsomolskaya Pravda website reports. "Let's use our roubles to help those who grow food with their own hands. Let's not haggle, and please always leave them your change," Rodovid says on its website. "They are simple, modest people, who often don't know how much to charge for their produce," it says. "They protect our seed stock and provide an alternative to agro-industry." In Russia's current economic crisis, many of the women rely on selling their produce to top up their pensions.

To promote the campaign, which it started in August, the group suggests supporters take photographs and post them on social media. The idea has struck a chord with online communities - one photo on Facebook garnered more than 5,000 likes and 14,000 shares in a single day. Most buyers express delight at the cost and quality of the fruit and veg on sale. "Look at this beautiful assortment!" says one person, alongside a picture of an abundant fruit, vegetable and plant stall. Another happy customer writes: "Every bucketful was 100 roubles... I bought fruit and berries to my heart's content." There are a few naysayers, though, with some suggesting the women may be selling on food that they buy from markets. Other readers are worried that the campaign isn't doing much for gender equality, with one person asking: "What about the granddads?"

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