Farmer’s markets are markets that allow customers to purchase locally grown, flavorful, farm-fresh, organic produce. This type of market is great because it comes straight from the ground to your hands. This type of market allows farmers to develop personal relationships with the buyers and the consumers can show their loyalty with the farmers. The setup to the market varies, but typically it takes place once or twice a week at a designated public place. Some markets even make it more of a social get-together by providing live entertainment.
Farmer’s markets play an integral part in the urban/farm linkage. Farmer’s markets have gained much popularity throughout the years, the main culprit to this popularity is consumers wanting to get fresh produce straight from the source. According to the USDA, today there are more than 4,600 farmer’s markets operating throughout the nation.
5 Good Reasons to Shop a Farmer’s Market
1. Normally farmer’s market produce prices are extremely competitive, providing you with great value without having to spend a lot of money.
2. Foods are seasonal. You will be provided with great quality produce that’s at its peak of freshness.
3. As mentioned above, some communities make it more of a social outing so you can have some quality family time while purchasing nutritious, healthy foods.
4. Serves as an educational opportunity for you and your kids. You will be shown different produce that you maybe haven’t seen and you can always ask the farmer which ways you can prepare the produce. Take you kids along and start showing them at an early age different foods and the benefits of healthy shopping and eating.
5. Everyone benefits — the farms, the farmers, the consumers — it’s an all-around great opportunity for everyone.
The only con to a farmer’s market is that you might have to drive to the location.
Find a market near you at the Agricultural Marketing Services (part of USDA) website.
May 6th, 2009