Friday, July 25, 2008

Farmer's Markets: Keeping it Fresh

It’s that time of year again, the heat has been sizzling most of the northern hemisphere for a good long time, and farmer’s markets are springing up all over. This summertime event happens in cities across the country, as well as many other areas around the world. You don’t have to own thousands of acres to have a booth—just something you have more of than you can use.

A couple of years ago I attended one in Spanish Fork where I bought peaches, pears and grapes. I’ve seen strawberries, tomatoes, and various other veggies at this open-air market. It can be a great way to cash in on some of your extra crops and the sign-up fees are often very affordable.

Even if you have nothing to sell, a local farmer’s market can have lots of benefits:

1) You get produce fresher than what you can find at the grocery store—produce picked a week ago is never as great as stuff that’s picked that morning, or the evening before.

2) The food you buy at one of these locations can cost you less than your local store and often has been exposed to fewer chemicals along the way.

3) Local markets keep your money in the area instead of sending it to other parts of the world.

4) Eating locally is good for the environment since the produce often comes from a few miles away instead of halfway across the country. There is a growing movement for locally-produced foods.

A farmer’s market is often set up at area parks, though larger ones may happen in fair grounds, and some managed to stay open year-round by going inside during winter months. Items available for purchase my vary
you can buy everything from produce, to fresh eggs and milk, to jewelry and art. Some markets even allow live animals—care to raise your own eggs for breakfast? There are twenty-eight farmer’s markets in Utah. If you want to see if there’s one near you, click here.

If you live outside of Utah try this link, or type ‘farmer’s market’ and the name of your state or province into a search engine and see what pops up.

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2 comments:

Rachelle said...

Fun! Fun! I love gardening and whenever I see farmer's markets they just make me smile. I guess that's the farmer in me. :)

Cindy Beck said...

Heather,
I'd never thought of that before, but it's a great idea to take your extra produce to a farmer's market. Think of all the zuchinni you could get rid of that way! :)

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.