Farmers Market; are markets, usually held outdoors, in public spaces, where individuals can sell fresh and locally grown produce directly to the public.
In addition to fruits and vegetables, Farmers Markets often offer locally produced beef, pork, lamb and poultry as well as eggs, artisan cheeses and bedding plants. Meats are processed at state or federally inspected facilities.
Why Buy locally at a Farmers Market?
- Farmers Market produce is picked ripe and sold fresh
- You'll find unusual varieties of fruits and vegetables
- Buying locally grown produce encourages regional farming
- When produce is grown and purchased locally, the money remains in the community and stimulates the local economy
- 12 Reasons to visit a Farmers Market
Farmers Market Shopping Tips
- Know your seasons - learn what grows in your area when and talk to local farmers to see what will be available at the Market in weeks to come
- Go early or go late - to ensure the best section of produce go to the Market early, however, if looking for the best deal, go late.
- Bring a big bag and small change - some growers will have plastic bags available for your purchased items and some will not - to ensure that your items make it home with you it would be best to bring your own bag. Vendors will make change, although your shopping experience will be easier and faster if you have exact or close to exact change
- Buy in volume - the best deals at the Farmers Market is when you buy in bulk
Food Safety Tips for Fresh Produce
- Take your fresh produce home as soon as possible. Food will decline in quality and perishable food items can pose safety problems if left sitting in your car
- Some produce can be ripened on the counter and then stored in the refrigerator. Examples include: tomatoes, onions, nectarines, peaches, pears and plums
- Wash produce thoroughly before you use it, not when you bring it home