Louisiana Farmers Market Guide

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Find a Local Farmers Market in LA

Just about everybody knows by now that Louisiana farmers markets are one of the best places to find great local produce. Fortunately they are also great places to socialize, taste test new, fresh ingredients before you buy, and even watch cooking demonstrations and entertainment in many cases.

Louisiana farmers markets highlight the products from local farms and other agri-businesses, and they occur in your own home town, so you don't need to journey far to find them. They have been going on for years in some locations, but they've 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 Louisiana

The advantages of shopping at your local Louisiana farmers market are many. First, you are assured the produce and other items are as fresh as they can be, because they come directly from the farm to the market. The majority of 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, Louisiana farmers markets are good for the environment. Farms contribute oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the air, which can help relieve global warming, and usually, farmers do not have to drive too far to the market, so the environment gets another boost by using less fuel and contributing less pollutants into the air.

Often, rates are cheaper at farmers markets, too, because the farmer doesn't have 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 cash for a much better product, and who doesn't like that?

These markets benefit Louisiana farmers, as well, given that they have a weekly (or daily) market to appeal to customers, and in addition they don't need to ship their products days or weeks in advance at low cost, so they make a better profit, too. It's always better to buy from local LA farms, because the money stays in the local economy, and that means more jobs and profits - all from buying fresh local produce!

Finding Your Local Louisiana Farmers Market

Farmers markets generally run from late May or early June through September or October, according to where you live and your climate. Actually it all is dependent upon the growing season in your area and when farmers can get their first products to market. Louisiana 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'll find a schedule from your local Cooperative Extension or county agricultural board, too. They have become so popular, in fact, that some communities get to enjoy a number of 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 Louisiana Farmers Market

You will be sure to find local Louisiana farms promoting their products at good 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. Many booths will give you a free taste of whatever you are looking at, so you can check out new flavors and crops you may not have had a chance to experience before.

Some farmers may also offer you 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 Louisiana farmer market or two, and come home with everything you need for a healthy, hearty dinner.