January 2015: Top 4 Reasons To Shop At A Farmer’s Market

Farmers markets may be less popular in the winter, but Alabama A&M and Auburn Extension list four reasons to still go. 

By Kristin Woods, Alabama A&M and Auburn Extension
May 30, 2014

The Alabama Farmer’s Market program provides a way for farmers to provide locally grown produce, baked goods, flowers, and other agricultural products to the public. The program helps assure the consumer a high quality product at a reasonable price and a fair profit for the producer.  There are a million good reasons to shop Alabama Farmer’s Markets.  Here are the top 4 that we came up with:

1)      Tasty food.  Locally grown food tastes better.  Local produce is picked at its peak and travels only a few miles to get to the market.  Fresh fruits and vegetables always taste better than those traveling thousands of miles to get to you.
2)      Nutritious food.  The shorter time from harvest to market means that fruits and vegetable will still be loaded with nutrients when they reach your dinner table.
3)      Support local families.  Wholesale prices for fruits and vegetables sold to large markets are generally very low.  By cutting out the middleman, farmers receive retail price for their produce which helps ensure that they can stay in business.
4)      Build community. When you buy produce directly from the farmer, you maintain a connection with where your food comes from.  You can ask the farmer what variety it is, how it was raised, if commercial pesticides were used.  Local farm families are proud of what they produce and will usually have some great recipes to share with your family.
Wherever you see an Alabama Farmer’s Market, stop in to see what might be good for dinner, get good and nutritious food, support local families, and build communities ties.  For more information on food safety or storing fresh fruits and vegetables, contact your local County Extension office.  To find a Farmer’s Market in your area go to  http://www.fma.alabama.gov/FMCounty.aspx

About Agriculture is America
Agriculture is America. In short, the agriculture industry — sustained in large part by the American land-grant university system through both Agricultural Experiment Stations and Cooperative Extension — is integral to jobs, national security, and health.

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