With Farmers markets popping up around the country, and even locally, here are some things you should know, as well as a few tips to make your experience at the market most enjoyable.
- The Mount Jackson Farmers' Market is governed by a Town Ordinance that requires that at least 50% of a vendors' offerings are "grower-produced".
- Our vendors grow the majority, if not all of their own food. Other markets often bring food in that they have purchased from "wholesalers". If our vendors have something like that, they will tell you. Otherwise, you can rest assured that they are growing it themselves.
- Ask. Our vendors are very proud of what they have to offer at the market. Many are happy to share tips and tricks about how they are growing such great produce. Feel free to talk with them and ask if they have produced what they are offering.
- If you don't see something that you want, feel free to ask if a grower might have it later in the season. Many of our growers are quite flexible and love to try new things. If you want it, it's likely that others do too. Also, just because there's not a sign out, or something on a table, doesn't mean that a vendor might not have something you want, or know where to get it.
Here are some more tips about to help make the most of shopping at a farmers' market:
- Get there early if you can. Many of vendors have limited quantities.
- Or stop by late. Sometimes, vendors will have last-minute discounts or "two-fers" so that they aren't taking home things brought to the market.
- Sign up for our newsletter. We offer some great discounts and promotions. Plus, we'll let you know what's coming to the market.
- Because our vendors grow with the local growing season, not all things will be available all the time. Don't be afraid to try something new. If a vendor is offering something you might not be familiar with, ask them how they prepare it. They might even share a family recipe or two!
- Know your farmer. This is probably the neatest thing about farmer's markets. You get to know exactly where your food is coming from.
- Most importantly, (and especially with our start-up market), stop often. Vendors can and do get discouraged when the numbers of customers dwindle. By being there, you can make suggestions, and the vendors can better determine quanities, what works and what doesn't. It's all about you!
One last note, our last outdoor Market for this year will be the weekend of the Mount Jackson Harvest Festival, October 13th and 14th. We will have a number of first time vendors that weekend, so please come by to support them.