Interest in local, fresh fruits and vegetables is on the rise as more and more Hoosiers look to support their local small business owners with their shopping cart. Visiting your local farmers market is a weekend staple for some families. While many dread long trips to the grocery store, farmers market shoppers often look forward to their Saturday morning shopping trips with friends and family. Many markets even boast live entertainment, making it a weekend destination.
The products available at many Indiana farmers markets don’t stop at fresh fruits and veggies. Many producers sell jellies and jams, cheeses, meats, eggs, breads and pastries and even coffee or pasta.
Purchasing food from your local farmer’s market also is a great opportunity to ask questions about your food. Confused about the phrases you see on your food labels? Most vendors will jump at the opportunity to explain their products and what to look for the next time you are in a conventional grocery store.
Not sure if you have a farmers market in your area? There are quite a few resources available to help you find the closest pop-up grocery shopping destination. For many, you’ll find the news and information you need about your local farmers market in your area newspaper or other circulating print publication. For a directory of Indiana farmers markets by city, visit Farmer’s Market Online. If you’re looking for a specific product, you can view Purdue’s vendor guide for specialty crops. You might also be interested in learning more about the Indiana State Department of Agriculture’s labeling initiative, Indiana Grown; a resource for Hoosiers looking to identify and purchase food that is grown, raised or processed in Indiana.
Don’t hesitate to stop by your local farmers market this summer. And be sure to bring plenty of reusable shopping bags. It’s common to find more goodies than you originally intended!