Enjoy a Tasty Outing by Visiting the Farmers Market
Support family farmers who work hard day-after-day to grow nutritious fruits, vegetables and more
Fresh local eggs, peppers and onions make the perfect summer frittata
Image provided by Cindy Silver.
If you like taking kid-friendly outings, love the fresh air and adore fresh and local foods, then the Farmers Market is a perfect destination as summer begins. There are many great reasons to visit a Farmers Market, such as:
- Tasting wonderful flavors fresh from the farm
- Supporting family farmers who work hard day-after-day to grow nutritious fruits, vegetables and more
- Protecting the environment by buying food that was grown nearby and was packaged and traveled less
- Nourishing your family with minimally processed foods picked ripe
- Discovering varieties that you cannot find at the grocery store – like heirloom tomatoes, figs or watermelon radishes
- Knowing where your food comes from by striking up a conversation with a farmer who grew it
- Learning cooking tips, recipes and how to prepare fresh foods from farmers who are passionate about their product(s)
- Connecting with your community, meeting friends and getting a ‘taste’ of the country
Don’t be fooled into thinking that Farmers Markets are only about fruits, vegetables and fresh herbs – which, by the way, are spectacular. These days, you’ll typically find a wide variety of foods. Some farmers sell grass-fed beef, lamb, and/or chicken. Others sell chicken or quail eggs, or local honey. The Farmers Market in your town may be a place to buy local strawberry or peach jam, pickled local beets or homemade bread. Also, it’s not uncommon to find handmade crafts and clothing, too. If you’re a gardener, then a visit to the Farmers Market may be your best place to buy locally-raised plants, shrubs or cut sunflowers. The fun goes on and on.
Kids can have a great experience at the Farmers Market when they pick out a pint of blueberries to take home and make into blueberry pancakes. Or, coax them into picking out a colorful vegetable and then cook it for dinner. As summer rolls along, kids and adults can team up to buy delicious local foods for the backyard grill, the neighborhood pool potluck or a picnic in the park.
Local Harvest is a website where you can find out about the family farms and Farmers Markets in your town. Look at the top of the homepage for a way to search for something near you!
Cindy Silver is a licensed, registered dietitian based in Winston-Salem. In addition to her "Nibbles of Nutrition" blog, she also serves on the Piedmont Parent Fit Family Challenge Expert Panel. For family-friendly, nutritional tips and recipes, follow Cindy on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and visit her website.