Find a Local Farmers Market in IN
Just about everyone should know by now that Indiana farmers markets are one of the better places to find great local produce. Fortunately they are also great places to make friends, taste test new, fresh ingredients before you buy, and even watch cooking demonstrations and entertainment in many cases.
Indiana farmers markets highlight the products from local farms and other agri-businesses, and they also occur right in your own home town, so you aren't required to journey far to find them. They have been going on for years in some locations, but they have gotten popular in the last few years, so you should be able to find one not far from home!
The Benefits of Farmers Markets in Indiana
The advantages of shopping at your local Indiana farmers market are many. First, you know the produce and other items are as fresh as they can be, since they come directly from the farm to the market. Many crops available for sale at these markets are naturally grown, so you know your friends and family will not be eating anything except farm-fresh goodness.
Also, Indiana farmers markets are good for the environment. Farms contribute oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the air, which can help minimize global warming, and usually, farmers don't have to drive too far to the market, so the environment gets another boost by using less fuel and contributing fewer pollutants in the air.
Often, prices are cheaper at farmers markets, too, because the farmer does not need to mark up his prices to make money from a wholesaler, who marks up the prices again before they get to the supermarket. So, you're actually paying less money for a much better product, and who doesn't like that?
These markets profit Indiana farmers, as well, since they have a weekly (or daily) market to appeal to customers, and in addition they don't have to ship their products days or weeks beforehand at low cost, therefore they make a better profit, too. It's always safer to purchase from local IN farms, since the money stays in the local economy, and that means more jobs and profits - all from buying fresh local produce!
Finding Your Local Indiana Farmers Market
Farmers markets in most cases run from late May or early June through September or October, depending on where you live and your climate. Actually it all depends upon the growing season in your area and when farmers can get their first products to market. Indiana farmers markets are such a big deal now, that usually local newspapers will print a schedule of markets in your area as the season is about to begin.
Often, you can find a schedule from your local Cooperative Extension or county agricultural board, too. They have become quite popular, in fact, that some communities enjoy several farmers markets every week, so it pays to shop all of them and choose the ones that provide the produce and other products you like the best.
What to Look for at a Indiana Farmers Market
You're sure to find local Indiana farms promoting their wares at affordable prices, but there are a few things to look out for. Make sure the produce is ripe and hasn't been sitting out in the sun too long, or has been damaged in transport. Nearly all booths will offer you a free taste of whatever you're looking at, so you can check out new flavors and crops you might not have had a chance to experience before.
Some farmers may also provide you with recipes and other ideas on how to serve their products, too. At the really big markets, organizers may bring in free entertainment, arts and crafts booths, and other amusements to bring in the crowds, and they may even provide play areas for the kids, too.
Look for other items at your farmers market, too. Sometimes local meat, cheese, and dairy producers bring their wares, and big markets are more like a county fair, with food booths, information booths, and even games for the whole family. So, check out a local Indiana farmer market or two, and come home with everything you need for a healthy, hearty dinner.