Just about everybody knows these days that Lafayette farmers markets are among the best places to find great local produce. They're also great places to interact socially, taste test new, fresh ingredients before buying, and even watch cooking demonstrations and entertainment on many occasions.
Lafayette farmers markets highlight the products from local farms and other agri-businesses, and they also occur in your own home town, so you aren't required to journey far to discover 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 Lafayette, OR
The advantages of shopping at your local Lafayette farmers market are many. First off, you know the produce and other items are as fresh as they can be, as they come straight from the farm to the market. The majority of 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, Lafayette 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 a lower number of pollutants in the air.
Generally, rates 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 will be actually paying less cash for a far better product, and who doesn't like that?
These markets profit Lafayette farmers, as well, given that they have a weekly (or daily) market to appeal to customers, and they don't need to ship their products days or weeks beforehand at low cost, therefore they make a better profit, too. It's always safer to buy from local Lafayette 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 Lafayette Farmers Market
Farmers markets primarily run from late May or early June through September or October, depending on where you live and your climate. Really it all depends upon the growing season in your area and when farmers can get their first products to market. Lafayette 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 will find a schedule from your local Cooperative Extension or county agricultural board, too. They've 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 Lafayette Farmers Market
You're sure to find local Lafayette farms offering 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 offer 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 even 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 Lafayette farmer market or two, and come home with everything else you need for a healthy, hearty dinner.