farmers market

    TIPS FOR SHOPPING THE FARMERS MARKET

    TIPS FOR SHOPPING THE FARMERS MARKET 1024 1024 Delphine Remy | Holistic Nutrition & Eating Psychology Coach

    Yes! What a fun topic to write about this week. I just love farmers markets. The vendors switch up from week to week; and there’s always delicious organic foods, creamy cheeses and fresh baked breads in the stands. I can never stop myself from sampling the variety of quiches and pastries they have for sale. Can you tell I’m excited? Well I am. If you’re new to the idea of shopping open markets or farmers markets the thought can be intimidating but not to worry, today I’m going to share a few helpful tips for shopping your local farmers market that will make your first experience a great one.

    Dress comfortably
    Farmers markets vary from city to city — some are stationary and open each weekend while others are more like pops up that are built and broken down in various parks, lots or centers around the city. If you are visiting a new or unfamiliar farmers market be sure to dress comfortably and wear comfortable shoes. You’ll find that visiting an open market is a little different than going to the grocery store. There will be variety of vendors selling fresh foods and other vendors selling fresh cut flowers and plants, handmade soaps and artisan crafts making ‘shopping’ more of a leisure activity. Plan to spend between an hour to two hours at the market. Possibly more if you stop to oo and ah at every stand.

    Some markets have areas set up for light lunches and wine tastings during summer months making it a fun atmosphere for families or couples. Farmers markers are great for day-dates and getting out of the house. Find one near you!

    farmers market

    Bring a tote!
    I recommend bringing a tote from home for multiple reasons. It helps limit your purchases to what you can fit in the bag. Trust me — you will try and buy everything the first few times you go. Not all vendors will have shopping bags, plus totes are also environmentally friendly. In Belgium, its second nature to reuse and recycle (mainly because it’s the law) but the culture of recycling doesn’t seem to carry over into other parts of the world. Did you know that plastic shopping bags will take 1000 years to degrade? Now take a guess how many the US throws away each year? … 100 billion according to Rensselaer County Legislature. That’s truly a sad number. Let’s try and do our part to be environmentally conscious by using utility totes when we can.

    Bring cash
    As they say, cash is king. You will most likely not find an ATM on site so plan ahead before heading over to the farmers market. Few vendors will process credit cards but all take cash. The good news about cash is that you’ll have to plan and budget your spending at the market for the items you actually need and some prices are negotiable — if you’re good at haggling. And again, a fixed budget will keep you from going overboard on non necessities.

    farmers market

    Shopping in season
    This is my favorite aspect of shopping the farmers market — I always shop what’s in season. I may not be able to afford to do that with my wardrobe but shopping fresh fruits and veggies in season actually saves me money. Seasonal produce is locally sourced and essentially sold farm to table, everything is fresh, tasty and cheap because it doesn’t need to travel far or be stored. Shopping seasonally is also a great way to get exposed to new fresh fruits and veggies grown in your area you would normally not think to try and promotes eating the rainbow.

    Another great perk to shopping in season is that farmers typically have a surplus of their yield and will sell in bulk for cheap. You will not believe the money you will save when you buy blueberries or strawberries in bulk and freeze for later use. Support the local farmers in your area by shopping seasonally.

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