Spring is in the air and vibrant colors are taking over, even when it comes to your food! Take a look around your neighborhood supermarket and notice all the fruits and veggies in season right now. They look delicious, right? Well, perhaps not as yummy or satisfying as making a home-cooked meal made with fresh produce from your local farmers market this weekend.
Why Farmers Markets?
The biggest drawbacks to farmers markets are their limited operating hours. But if you can plan around that, don’t miss out on the amazing nutritional, community and other benefits they offer. What was once a hectic Thursday night trip to the grocery store can be a fun weekend outing with your family, experiencing all the fresh sights and smells of shopping locally.
Fresher, Riper Food
Produce at the grocery store is often several days old before it hits shelves. Farmers markets on the other hand have a much more direct shipping process, ensuring the food you picked out is as fresh as possible. They’re also a lot more ripe, often picked at the peak of their ripeness when the plant’s natural sugars are maximized. This also promises the most nutritional value.
More Texture, Better Flavor
Compare an apple from a farmers market to one from the grocery store. The apple from the market will likely be juicier, sweeter and a lot more crispy without a bunch of soft spots. That’s the beauty of fresh and local food. Farmers market produce makes for wonderful cooking ingredients!
A Break for Your Wallet
It’s no secret that fruits and veggies can add up on your grocery store bill. Five dollars for a small bag of potatoes isn’t unheard of! Farmers markets can cut your wallet some slack though, because their foods are generally a lot less expensive than conventionally grown produce.
More to Choose from
How many times has a recipe called for a specific ingredient like butternut squash, but you couldn’t find it at your grocery store? Since farmers markets specialize in produce, they typically offer a larger variety. You might even find 3+ different versions of the same food!
The Whole Experience
Do you actually enjoy going to the grocery store, especially on a bustling weekend afternoon? The experience can be quite stressful with high costs, big crowds and the monotony of it all. However, the rich sights and smells of farmers markets can make them a fun and memorable experience for your family that also serves your local community. They connect you to your food and show you more about where your food comes from, and this knowledge forms the basics of nutrition.
This spring and summer, don’t miss out on the chance to shop seasonally with your family at your local farmers market! You’ll benefit not only your health, but also your community.