Vermont Farmers Market Guide

Find a Local Farmers Market in VT

Just about everyone should know by now that Vermont farmers markets are one of the best places to find great local produce. Also they are great places to socialize, taste test new, fresh ingredients before buying, and even watch cooking demonstrations and entertainment in many cases.

Vermont 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 travel far to locate them. They have been going on for years in some locations, but they've become popular in the last few years, so you should be able to find one not far from home!

The Benefits of Farmers Markets in Vermont

The benefits of shopping at your local Vermont farmers market are many. First off, you are assured 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 for sale at these markets are organically grown, so you know your friends and family will not be eating anything except farm-fresh goodness.

Also, Vermont farmers markets are good for the environment. Farms contribute oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the air, which will help reduce 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 lot fewer emissions into the air.

Often, rates are cheaper at farmers markets, too, because the farmer does not have to mark up his prices to generate income from a wholesaler, who marks up the prices again prior to them getting to the supermarket. So, you are actually paying less of your budget for a far better product, and who does not like that?

These markets profit Vermont farmers, as well, given that they have a weekly (or daily) market to bring in customers, and they don't have to ship their products days or even weeks beforehand at wholesale prices, so they make a better profit, too. It's always safer to buy from local VT farms, since the money stays in the local economy, and that means more jobs and earnings - all from buying fresh local produce!

Finding Your Local Vermont 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 on the growing season in your area and when farmers can get their first products to market. Vermont 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 can 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 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 Vermont Farmers Market

You're sure to find local Vermont 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. Many 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 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 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 Vermont farmer market or two, and come home with everything else you need for a healthy, hearty dinner.