Make The Most Of Your Market Trip

With spring now in full force many farmers markets across the country will be overflowing with incredibly earthy delights!  Many of us talk about eating locally and seasonally and local farmers markets provide the perfect opportunities for you to do so. Farm fresh food goes through fewer steps to get from the earth to your table thereby maximizing nutrition and quality.

Here are a few tips to make your trip to the Farmers Market successful and delicious!

Timing matters.  Arriving early to the market enables you to choose from the best offerings that day.  Produce and herbs will be fresher and handled much less than by the end of the day.  The early bird might get it all so if your schedule allows, hop in early to make the most of your market trip.  Special seasonal items will also sell quickly.  Organic eggs go very fast so if those are on your list, be sure to arrive early!  Sometimes, the end of the day might bring you certain bargains, as farmers would rather sell than cart items back home.

Be equipped.  BYOB (Bring Your Own Bags) and/or prior egg cartons, veggie bins and whatever else to make it easier to transport your items from the market.  Most stalls will have plastic grocery bags but they are often flimsy and of course not environmentally friendly.  If you will not be heading right home, pack a cooler to keep your items fresh and wilt free.  Bring your cash and preferably smaller bills.  Exact change is always appreciated, as large bills are often hard to break, especially at the smaller markets.

Scope it out.  Before diving right in, take a stroll around the market to see what is available and what might interest you.  Varieties, quality and pricing definitely do vary from booth to booth or vendor to vendor.  Make the most of your visit by checking things out before you buy.

Know what’s in season.  Be suspicious if a vendor is selling out of season produce.  This guide is an excellent resource for knowing what is in season in your very own region:  What Is In Season Guide

Get acquainted.  Most vendors will be there week after week so take the time to get to know them.  Ask them about their farms and if you have any questions about the produce, ask them.  Most often they are delighted to educate consumers and many have recipe ideas also.  Loyalty is appreciated and if you make regular visits to certain vendors they may offer better pricing or special products.  Don’t be shy!

Be adventurous.  Try new items.  If you are not sure about an item, simply ask.  If you have children with you, get them involved in choices as well and have them pick something out to prepare at home.  They will be much more likely to try something they picked out.

Looking for a farmers market near you?  Check out these comprehensive guides that you can search by location.

Real Time Farms

Local Harvest  

USDA Farmers Market Directory Search

Farm Stand App

What Is In Season Now

Enjoy all that the Farmers market offers and support your local economy and farmers!









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