[Video] Why Shop At Farmer’s Markets?

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Find fresh foods, new friends, and a feeling of connection to your community when you shop at farmer’s markets this summer…

It’s the start of farmer’s market season, and spring markets are opening up all across the country, offering city dwellers access to fresh, local food from nearby farmers. Farmer’s markets are not only a great way to feed your family fresh, healthy, seasonal foods, but they also help you connect and build relationships within your community, support local growers, and promote transparency in the food supply. You can often find organic produce at a great price, and if you shop wisely, you can sometimes even save money over purchasing produce at the grocery store.

Here are a few more benefits of shopping at farmer’s markets, according to NourishLife.org:

  1. Enjoy food at its freshest and most flavorful. Food that is grown, produced, and sold locally taste better—and is better for you—than food that has traveled thousands of miles from farm to plate.
  2. Try new foods. Many farmers let you sample before buying. If you’re not sure how to prepare a particular fruit or vegetable, ask the vendor for suggestions.
  3. Get in tune with the seasons. When you shop at the farmers market, you discover the excitement of spring’s first cherry harvest and the first sweet potatoes of fall. Farmers markets educate us about what foods are local and when they’re at their peak.
  4. Create community. Farmers markets offer a safe, outdoor space to meet and mingle with neighbors and food producers. More than just a place to shop, the farmers market is a place to build relationships around food.
  5. Learn the story of your food. By meeting farmers and food producers face to face, you can ask questions about how your food was grown, when it was picked, and what items are special or in season this week.
  6. Invest in local farms and businesses. By enabling farmers to sell their produce at retail cost, farmers markets help sustain businesses and families in your area, and provide a venue for new and small-scale farms.
  7. Preserve farmland and the environment. Farmers markets keep local farms in business, which reduces sprawl and protects farmland and open spaces. By encouraging local food production, they also reduce the use of fossil fuels and natural resources.
  8. Give back. By shopping at farmers markets, you nourish your community. Help your market thrive by volunteering as an organizer, promoter, or greeter. If you don’t have a farmers market in your area, consider starting one (see the resources here).

What are your favorite reasons for shopping at your local farmer’s market?

Do yourself, your community, and the planet a favor and make a commitment to shop at a local farmer’s market at least once a month this summer – or even better, weekly!

LocalHarvest.org is a great free resource for finding farmer’s markets and CSAs in your area.

 

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