There’s something whimsically beautiful about heading into town to do some local grocery shopping at the weekend farmer’s market. With an array of colorful displays, friendly local farmers and a slew of homemade pastries and treats that just taste better—Farmer’s markets comes with tons of benefits, and are a great way to start putting your money where your mouth is and supporting your local economy while giving yourself a fresh and satisfying treat.
Today, eco18 is going to examine all the different ways supporting Farmer’s Markets benefits not only you, but the environment, the economy and so much more…
1. The Freshest Feasts: Produce at traditional grocery stores are often riddled with controversy regarding pesticides, shelf life, nutrition and more. Though you may not realize it when at the store, produce often sits in refrigerated trucks and travels thousands of miles before arriving at it’s destination. With Farmer’s Markets, you know that the fruit and veggies are often picked that very same morning. There is also a far higher chance that produce at a farmers market is chemical free, non-GMO and (more often than not) certified organic. Last up in terms of quality of produce—have you ever noticed that the fruit and veggies at your grocery store just don’t look as fresh or bright as the ones at the weekend market? Well, there’s a reason for that. Items at the farmer’s market are picked at the peak ripeness, and don’t have to travel long distances to get to their destination. Therefore, they are often brighter and more colorful than typical grocery store produce because they are still filled with the peak amount of nutrients the item can contain.
2. Showing Local Families Love: While purchasing your produce at a local farmer’s market is the healthiest and smartest option for you—it’s also the smartest option in terms of keeping your local economy thriving! On average, farmer’s market produce is grown within a maximum of 100 miles, meaning the money earned goes directly to local jobs. This is especially important because, as we all know, factory farming has pretty much taken over the industry meaning that local family farms have decreased over the years resulting from the inability to keep going due to monopoly farms and high costs. By purchasing items from a farmers market, you know that our money is going to support local family farms, and will give them the capital they need to maintain their operations and support themselves financially.
3. Environmental Elevation: Though you probably don’t even think about this when you’re paroozing the aisle of the farmer’s market, shopping locally has a HUGE impact on the environment in terms of your carbon footprint! As mentioned above, produce from grocery stores travel thousands and thousands of miles in refrigerated trucks, causing insane amount of food miles to rack up, and ultimately increase pollution. Since farmer’s market produce generally travels a maximum of 100 miles, you know that your shopping cart isn’t doing nearly as much damage as it would by shopping at your conglomerate grocery store.
These are only a few reasons why heading to your local Farmer’s Market can really make an impact and help you become a more conscious consumer! For more information on the benefits of local produce shopping, check out the following what nutrition.gov has to say on the subject here.