With the warmer weather, your local farmers market will open soon! Learn some tips to shop smart.
Everyone loves a good farmers market to buy the freshest local, and seasonal fruits and vegetables.
As summer approaches, you start to see farm stands pop up and advertisement for your local area.
Get your corn on the cob, tomatoes and everything else you love this spring and summer season!
How to Shop Your Local Farmers Market
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Get to Know the Farmers
When you form relationships with your local farmers, it is the best way to find out if you are actually getting local produce.
This is a great way to get to know how your food is harvested and when the best products are available.
Don’t Impulse Buy
You will have such a big selection of all kinds of produce, so try not to get too crazy or overwhelmed when shopping.
Just relax and wander through all the stands until you see items that you really want to purchase.
You Don’t Need a List
Farmers markets will offer local, seasonal produce and usually other products like dairy, honey, meat and flowers.
You may notice that there are some different things each week you visit.
You will know what you what when you see what's fresh at the stands, and that’s when you can decide what’s on the menu at home for that week.
Stock Up on Seasonal Produce
Now is the perfect time to stock up and preserve some of the best bounties of things like peaches and cucumbers and turn them into delicious pickles.
If you don't have any experience, it is easy to learn how to pickle anything.
Watch Your Food Waste
You don’t have to go to the market and stock for the entire week.
Instead, consider hitting up the weekend farmers market and only buying enough to get you through the next few days so that you can get the best deals and freshest produce.
Your local supermarket most likely carries local and seasonal products, so simply check that option out as well.
This way your fridge and kitchen space won’t be overloaded with tons of fruits and vegetables.
Keep Your Market Finds Fresh
Most fruits and vegetables don’t need to be refrigerated. In fact, with items like tomatoes they will lose their freshness quickly and become mealy and mushy.
Make sure you do store greens and some vegetables that the farmer can recommend putting in the fridge.
Use your crisper so that air can circulate and keep them fresher.
Don’t store fruits and vegetables together because some give off a gas called ethylene.
Bring a Bag
The best way to carry all of your fresh produce is bring your own large canvas bag.
Another great tip is to bring a cooler in your car with some ice for the items that need to stay cool before you can get home.
If the market sells milk, cheese, and eggs you will want to put them in a cooler.
Enjoy the spring and summer seasons by visiting your local farmers markets and support your community. You can also visit farms to do pick-your-own produce.