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Fresh food nation

New stamps reflect popular trend, essayist writes

Summer Harvest
The Summer Harvest stamp sheet

Hipsters, take note: The new Summer Harvest stamps are made for you.

The four stamps, issued July 11, showcase cantaloupes, sweet corn, tomatoes and watermelons. The artwork evokes vintage crate labels from the 19th and 20th centuries.

In a new essay on the Atlantic news site, writer Steven Heller suggests the stamps could help the Postal Service connect with the young urbanites driving the nation’s interest in organic and “locally sourced” food.

This is the type of cool customer, Heller writes, “who listens to records on vinyl, visits the local farmer’s market, shops for antiques, and might even occasionally forgo the ease of Gmail or Facebook in favor of writing and mailing a handwritten letter.”

This wouldn’t be the first time young people have unexpectedly embraced a stamp.

A 1967 stamp honoring Henry David Thoreau “proved exceedingly popular” among young customers who regarded artist Leonard Baskin’s portrait of Thoreau as a counterculture emblem, Heller writes.

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