If you are anyone like me, you certainly love strolling through stalls of regionally grown vegetables,freshly picked fruits & flowers from your local farmer, on a bright Summer afternoon. It is one of the most enjoyable treats you can give yourself in summer, to be out there enjoying the weather & smelling the delicious produce grown locally and in season.
Having lived here, for a while now have learnt a thing or two about the Farmer’s Market etiquette.Here is a list for the first timers, that could come in handy…..always, always take small change with you when you go to the market.One needs to carry a bag and the list of produce one needs for that week’s menu , don’t be surprised if you are tempted when you see all that fresh produce to buy a new veggie or two not on your list.
Always respect the farmer’s time & produce, don’t squeeze every veggie or fruit you hold in your hands to check how fresh they are.Farmer’s are you best source of information for how the produce is grown , so if you have a green thumb yourself you can learn a thing or two from experienced farmer’s wisdom on these matters.
You get to taste the fresh produce that is ripening this very week at the farm & not something that ripened while traveling in truck from a distant place,the flavor & the color is different than the one you get in your grocery store.
Walk up & down the market first before you decide to buy anything which would help you decide on what exactly you need to take home.Bargaining is usually not welcome, perhaps you might get lucky at the end of the day, but with dissatisfied smiles from the hardworking farmers.
Take your kids with you, as this is the best place to talk to them about nutritious food which can be grown in their backyard, apart from teaching them some money smart tricks on how to save on produce which are in season .
It would be a great place to meet friends or neighbors from your community& get to know the regular vendors & discuss about how much you enjoyed cooking with their produce each year, yes there is a thing called “gratitude” which blesses every soul that is touched by it.
This is the place you would bump into your local artist, soap makers, candle carvers, fabric painters and musicians all in one place, place to buy those unique gifts from local artists which you won’t find anywhere.
Farmer’s markets are also great places to find hard to find potted organic and heirloom veggies for your home garden.
A great place to stop by for homemade ice-cream ,baked goods & fresh cut flowers.Don’t miss out on the season, enjoy a beautiful sunny afternoon out shopping at your local farmer’s market, nothing beats the wisdom of sharing & learning from people who grow vegetables & fruits under the same environmental conditions and soil.