Just about everyone understands these days that Albuquerque farmers markets are among the best places to find great local produce. Fortunately they are also great places to interact socially, taste test new, fresh ingredients before you purchase, and even watch cooking demonstrations and entertainment on many occasions.
Albuquerque farmers markets highlight the products from local farms and other agri-businesses, and they take place right in your home town, so you don't have to journey far to discover them. They've been going on for years in some locations, but they've become more popular in the last few years, so you should be able to find one not far from home!
The Benefits of Farmers Markets in Albuquerque, NM
The benefits of shopping at your local Albuquerque farmers market are many. First, you know the produce and other items are as fresh as they can be, as they come straight from the farm to the market. Many crops for sale at these markets are organically grown, so you know your family and friends won't be eating anything except farm-fresh goodness.
Also, Albuquerque farmers markets are good for the environment. Farms contribute oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the air, which will help minimize global warming, and usually, farmers don't need to drive too far to the market, so the environment gets another boost while using less fuel and contributing a lot fewer emissions in the air.
Typically, rates are cheaper at farmers markets, too, because the farmer doesn't have to mark up his prices to earn money from a wholesaler, who marks up the prices again prior to them getting to the supermarket. So, you're actually paying less cash for a much better product, and who doesn't like that?
These markets benefit Albuquerque farmers, as well, given that they have a weekly (or daily) market to attract customers, and they don't need to ship their products days or weeks in advance at wholesale prices, therefore they make a better profit, too. It's always better to buy from local Albuquerque farms, because the money stays in the local economy, and that means more jobs and earnings - all from buying fresh local produce!
Finding Your Local Albuquerque Farmers Market
Farmers markets generally run from late May or early June through September or October, based 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. Albuquerque farmers markets are such a big deal now, that typically local newspapers will print a schedule of markets in your area as the season is about to begin.
Often, you will find a schedule from your local Cooperative Extension or county agricultural board, too. They've become quite 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 Albuquerque Farmers Market
You will be sure to find local Albuquerque farms offering 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. Many booths offer a free taste of whatever you're looking at, so you can check out new flavors and crops you may not have had a chance to experience before.
Some farmers may even 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 draw 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 Albuquerque farmer market or two, and come home with everything you need for a healthy, hearty dinner.