Do You Shop at Farmers' Market?

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    Aug 06, 2014 3:20 AM GMT
    NYT: For most of us, there’s no better place to buy fruits and vegetables than at a farmers’ market. Period. The talk about high prices isn’t entirely unjustified, but it can be countered.

    What’s inarguable is that farmers’ markets offer food of superior quality, help support smaller-scale farmers in an environment that’s more and more difficult for anyone not doing industrial-scale agriculture, and increase the amount of local food available to shoppers.

    Then there’s “know your farmer, know your food.” When you buy directly from a farmer, you’re pretty much guaranteed real freshness (we’ve all seen farmers’ market produce last two or three times longer than supermarket produce). You’re supporting a local business — even a neighbor!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/06/opinion/mark-bittman-farmers-market-values.html?ref=opinion
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    Aug 06, 2014 5:17 AM GMT
    Every Saturday morning. I line up at 9:30am because at 10 the place goes crazy…. All those motorized scooters, walkers! I will take out a 'walker' to get what i want!!..LOL. Don't mess with me. I'm in and out in 8 minutes once it opens at 10. Otherwise the lineups are long and all the best stuff is gone in 1/2 hr. I have gone for 4 years and I get a 'special' size from the lettuce lady! haha... I will also stop at any one of the numerous road side stands around my city to 'top up' my supply. Years ago it was a lot cheaper but I have no problem with the quality for the price. Beans, lettuce, tomatoes, eggs, cukes, onions, peppers, peas, berries you name i buy any fresh grown veg! icon_biggrin.gif
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    Aug 06, 2014 1:10 PM GMT
    We have one on Saturdays from May-October. I go when I can.
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    Aug 06, 2014 1:57 PM GMT
    woodsmen said
    What’s inarguable is that farmers’ markets offer food of superior quality, help support smaller-scale farmers in an environment that’s more and more difficult for anyone not doing industrial-scale agriculture, and increase the amount of local food available to shoppers.

    We do shop local markets, but fresh food quality here in South Florida is highly variable. Some produce is not better than our supermarkets, and can be much worse. So we are careful & selective. But fortunately our big Publix chain is really good with fresh vegetables & fruits, so we never go without.

    But we do value fresh when it's good. It's a habit I acquired 60 years ago as a kid. Our Sunday family drives through the Jersey countryside (yes, there really was country), included stops not at farmer's markets, but at small individual roadside stands, operated by the farmers themselves where their fields bordered the rural roads. And things like corn, tomatoes, green peppers, etc, were glorious.

    In an era when fresh produce sections in the first supermarkets barely existed, frozen foods were just being developed, with frozen cases being created for them (plus home refrigerators had no freezer sections for them), and canned veggies were mostly what we had, country vegetable stands were our first choice. Only problem was the winter, when we had to go back to cans.
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    Aug 06, 2014 3:44 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said

    But we do value fresh when it's good. It's a habit I acquired 60 years ago as a kid. Our Sunday family drives through the Jersey countryside (yes, there really was country), included stops not at farmer's markets, but at small individual roadside stands, operated by the farmers themselves where their fields bordered the rural roads. And things like corn, tomatoes, green peppers, etc, were glorious.

    In an era when fresh produce sections in the first supermarkets barely existed, frozen foods were just being developed, with frozen cases being created for them (plus home refrigerators had no freezer sections for them), and canned veggies were mostly what we had, country vegetable stands were our first choice. Only problem was the winter, when we had to go back to cans.


    There still are many of these stands around. We also bought random stuff like eggs from the people who produced them, some of whom were people we knew. Driving back and forth from Rehoboth there were tons of these places along Rte. 13; we make do with community farmer's markets and one working farm right in the middle of suburbia that has a limited selection but good quality.

    We also have "Farmer's Market" stores which sell produce, rolls and some dairy products very cheaply. I am not sure where it comes from but the quality is good for the most part.
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    Aug 06, 2014 7:22 PM GMT
    I go every week. I have gotten to know my produce suppliers well and order meat direct from the farmers. I pick up lamb for the week and anything that is in season. Right now we are still a month from the early harvest but it should be great in September and October.

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    Aug 06, 2014 8:14 PM GMT
    I don't understand farmer's markets. Here is the L.A. area, they are usually tended by Mexican guys and the produce looks old and probably chemically sprayed produce.
  • roadbikeRob

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    Aug 06, 2014 10:21 PM GMT
    I visit a local farmers market held every Saturday between May and November in Buffalo's Elmwood Village neighborhood. Depending on what food items you buy, I find that farmers markets are cheaper than the grocery store.
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    Aug 07, 2014 5:57 PM GMT
    Every week. We have so many here, that one never has to go r=far to find one (usually open on 1 day a week). Nothing beats the taste of old-fashioned tomatoes (so unlike those red rocks sold in supermarkets), or peaches that ripen on a tree, and dribble down your face when you bite into one. And if you want to feel real special, you can go to the really upscale markets that tourists, A-Gays, and techies frequent, where you get the opportunity to pay 3 times as much for locally made cheese as one would in France for real cheese.
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    Aug 07, 2014 6:15 PM GMT
    I think we all mostly agree on the concept of farm-fresh vegetables & fruits. The issue is the execution. And there's where we have to be selective, and consumer savvy.

    Farmers markets and roadside stands CAN be great, and I use them myself. But it's not guaranteed. Fortunately we have a supermarket chain with a nearby store here, that also has excellent produce. Which is helpful in South Florida, which is not a big farming area for many items we buy.

    And what's interesting is that while sometimes the little places will beat their prices, that's not always the case. Nor can the little markets & stands provide consistent quality as well as this supermarket we favor. Buying something that doesn't taste good despite being a bargain price is no bargain.
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    Aug 09, 2014 12:14 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    Art_Deco saidI think we all mostly agree on the concept of farm-fresh vegetables & fruits. The issue is the execution. And there's where we have to be selective, and consumer savvy.

    Farmers markets and roadside stands CAN be great, and I use them myself. But it's not guaranteed. Fortunately we have a supermarket chain with a nearby store here, that also has excellent produce. Which is helpful in South Florida, which is not a big farming area for many items we buy.

    And what's interesting is that while sometimes the little places will beat their prices, that's not always the case. Nor can the little markets & stands provide consistent quality as well as this supermarket we favor. Buying something that doesn't taste good despite being a bargain price is no bargain.


    The Fresh Market also has excellent quality produce. I'm still hoping they will open a store in my area of Miami - currently I have to go back across the bay to South Beach to shop at Fresh Market.


    And this is all Obama's fault.
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    Aug 09, 2014 5:16 PM GMT
    Upper_Cdn said
    southbeach1500 said
    Art_Deco saidI think we all mostly agree on the concept of farm-fresh vegetables & fruits. The issue is the execution. And there's where we have to be selective, and consumer savvy.

    Farmers markets and roadside stands CAN be great, and I use them myself. But it's not guaranteed. Fortunately we have a supermarket chain with a nearby store here, that also has excellent produce. Which is helpful in South Florida, which is not a big farming area for many items we buy.

    And what's interesting is that while sometimes the little places will beat their prices, that's not always the case. Nor can the little markets & stands provide consistent quality as well as this supermarket we favor. Buying something that doesn't taste good despite being a bargain price is no bargain.


    The Fresh Market also has excellent quality produce. I'm still hoping they will open a store in my area of Miami - currently I have to go back across the bay to South Beach to shop at Fresh Market.


    And this is all Obama's fault.

    Well if the result is greater availability of good fresh produce, let him continue to screw up.
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    Aug 09, 2014 7:27 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said

    But we do value fresh when it's good. It's a habit I acquired 60 years ago as a kid. Our Sunday family drives through the Jersey countryside (yes, there really was country), included stops not at farmer's markets, but at small individual roadside stands, operated by the farmers themselves where their fields bordered the rural roads. And things like corn, tomatoes, green peppers, etc, were glorious.



    Was in Hillsborough a couple of summers ago. Those roadside stands still exist, though maybe not as numerous as you remember. icon_wink.gif
  • Rene_Aensland

    Posts: 2495

    Aug 11, 2014 8:47 PM GMT
    Farmer's Market in Pasadena looks fun, there's always live performances as well. =]
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4433

    Aug 11, 2014 9:43 PM GMT
    Wish I could. We have one but the distance to drive makes it impractical. Besides, I go by a Fresh Market every day on the way home from the gym and just buy what I need for tonight's meal. FM is good at sourcing locally but I have to remember to not bitch if they're out of something. Like cilantro. Price you pay for local sourcing.