Now that it’s May, the farmers' markets are open and ready for business! This is a great way to find fresh, locally grown produce and other goods for all of your favorite recipes. A farmers’ market is a designated place, usually several blocks long, where local vendors sell food directly from their farms to consumers at a lower price than grocery stores. You can find a fruit, vegetables, plants, bread, cheese, jam, honey and many other products. It’s also a great way to know how and where your food is grown since you are able to speak directly to the farmer.
Are you still unsure if you should visit your local farmers’ market? It’s the perfect opportunity for you to choose from a vast variety of foods that are fresh, in season and at the height of its flavor and nutrition, all while supporting your local economy. It’s also a great way to expand your taste buds. Go with an open mind, thinking of how you can incorporate the foods offered into your meals or ask the farmers how they like to prepare what they grow.
Here are some great tips for making the most out of your trip to market:
- Bring reusable shopping bags. If you own a wagon or cart, those are welcome too.
- Ask vendors if they have any samples of the items they are selling.
- Buying in bulk saves you the most money.
- Carry cash, most vendors prefer small bills.
- Bring your favorite recipe book to make sure you have all the ingredients you need, but also keep an open mind about items you can use as substitutes.
- To get the most popular items, arrive early.
- To get the best deals, arrive late.
If you can’t make it to the market on a Saturday or Sunday morning, many cities have “indoor farmer’s markets” that are essentially stored with normal business hours during the spring and summer where you can find goods from the same vendors you would see out at the markets on the weekend. This is another great, and convenient, way to purchase fresh produce.
You can also visit this website to locate your nearest farmers’ market.