13 Strategies for Shopping Farmer's Markets.

Tis the season for locally grown goodness, sunny Saturday mornings, and actually smiling at those who grow and pick your food.

So, do it well, with these thirteen suggestions from the Chicago Tribune:

1 Make a schedule.

2 Decide on your priorities.

3 Plan your cook-in nights.

4 Bring your own reusable bags.
5 Get up early.
6 Don't expect bargains.

7 Do a walkthrough first.

8 Meet the vendors.

9 Ask for tips on preparation and recipes.

10 Bring cash.

11 Ask for upcoming in-season produce to plan pies, jellies, etc.

12 Shop in less fancy markets.

13 Double check the produce is local.

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JudithDial on Aug 03, 2009:

I work in a permanent farm stand, rather than a farmer's market, but....

Not only should you ask for recipes and preparation hints, but also ask "What's a good deal this week?"

We know when we marked down the last batch of peas because they aren't as pretty as the new batch, for example, and usually are delighted to sell you the not-so gorgeous ones cheap, or cheaper anyway. (Guess what we eat?)  We also know what's new this week and the product t that has been marked down because there's too much of it coming in at the same time.

If you ask when something (corn for example) has been picked, just accept what we say. If you think we're lying, saying so just irritates us. (Why ask then?)

Also, please don't say, "Don't you think that's outrageous?" and compare our prices to the supermarket's. The food's usually local and fresher, so expect to pay more!




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