Just about everyone understands by now that North Valley farmers markets are one of the better places to find great local produce. Also they are great places to interact socially, taste test new, fresh ingredients before you buy, and even watch cooking demonstrations and entertainment on many occasions.
North Valley farmers markets highlight the products from local farms and other agri-businesses, plus they happen in your home town, so you aren't required to travel 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 North Valley, NM
The benefits of shopping at your local North Valley farmers market are many. First, you are assured the produce and other items are as fresh as they can be, since they come straight from the farm to the market. Most crops available at these markets are naturally grown, so you know your family and friends won't be eating anything except farm-fresh goodness.
Also, North Valley farmers markets are good for the environment. Farms contribute oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the air, which will help alleviate global warming, and usually, farmers do not have to drive too far to the market, so the environment gets another boost from using less fuel and contributing a lesser number of emissions in the air.
Typically, rates are cheaper at farmers markets, too, because the farmer does not have to mark up his prices to earn money from a wholesaler, who marks up the prices again before they get to the supermarket. So, you will be actually paying less of your budget for a far better product, and who doesn't like that?
These markets profit North Valley 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 wholesale prices, therefore they make a better profit, too. It's always safer to buy from local North Valley 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 North Valley 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 on the growing season in your area and when farmers can get their first products to market. North Valley 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've already 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 North Valley Farmers Market
You are sure to find local North Valley farms selling their products 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 give you a free taste of whatever you are looking at, so you can check out new flavors and crops you might not have had a chance to experience before.
Some farmers will 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 North Valley farmer market or two, and come home with everything you need for a healthy, hearty dinner.