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Keeping it Local with Farmer's Markets

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I grew up in NJ - the "Garden State" - and now live in Iowa, where yes, I've heard every corn and cow joke known to man.

However, it wasn't until I lived in the Midwest that I began to really look at where the food I was feeding my family was coming from. My move out here coincided with my crash into the gluten-free Whole Foods lifestyle we now live and it seems like the timing was almost perfect in a way.

In order to reduce the artificial ingredients, hormones, and pesticides going into our bodies, we began buying grass-fed meat, local farm-fresh eggs, and organic produce.

We also began to support local farmers and merchants and began doing most of our weekly shopping at the farmer's market where we could. We can get everything from free-range chickens to salad greens to fresh goat cheese to homemade jams and salsa to hand-knitted scarves and hats and - my favorite - the coffee truck.

Our children love coming with us and on the warm spring and summer days, we sip tea or lemonade as we walk up and down the aisles, talking to the farmers who grew the food, eating local fresh fruits and veggies. It's such a great learning experience and they learn what Real Food is, where it comes from, how to make healthy choices, and support local agriculture.

I know that these products can be more expensive and I understand that not everyone can always afford these options.  But there's also some products like strawberries and apples that I think should be bought organic whenever possible due to the way pesticides can leak in through the porous fruit or sit on the skin we eat.  When in doubt on which organic produce is the most important, I refer to The Dirty Dozen - a list of the 12 fruits and vegetables with the highest pesticide content.

I've also found that simply by meeting and talking with the local farmers, you can learn their farming practices, and though they may not be "certified organic" (a process that is very rigorous), they may use organic farming practices. This is another great reason to get out to the farmer's market when you can!

Do you have a local farmer's market that you visit? Do you buy organic or local products from your supermarket? Do you teach your kids where their food comes from?


by on Apr. 6, 2012 at 12:00 AM
Replies (31-40):
KristinRox
by on Apr. 7, 2012 at 11:01 PM

Both of my girls have gotten a lot of information at school about our food and where it comes from. They also know that we try to by locally made/grown food rather then things that came from egypt or spain or wherever. We try to buy our food from a local store that grows everything, or buys it from local farms to sell. 

KristinRox
by on Apr. 7, 2012 at 11:02 PM

We also have a nice little local farm that sells things like eggs and veggies. We go in the summer time to get some great stuff. 

Quoting Mrs.Pool2Be:

We have a local farm here that we go to and get some of the freshest veggies and fruit and it's always so good.


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KristinRox
by on Apr. 7, 2012 at 11:04 PM

I would love to have the opportunity to buy from the amish. 

Quoting elijahsmama09:

I live near many Amish farmers, who grow everything organically and I buy a ton from them.


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KristinRox
by on Apr. 7, 2012 at 11:05 PM

I wish I had a green thumb so I could have a nice garden. 

Quoting daerca574:

 We garden organically at our place.  When we need fresh fruits and veggies we do go to the farmers market if there is one close.  Living in rural KS, sometimes there is no market open.   We do purchase fruits and veggies from the supermarket as well, but very minimal. 


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Mrs.Pool2Be
by on Apr. 8, 2012 at 5:34 AM

(I would totally love to buy from the Amish as well.   We have alot of Amish around us but I don't ever hear of any that sell their stuff.  But if I could I would totally support them.   I ♥ anything to do with the Amish.

Quoting KristinRox:

I would love to have the opportunity to buy from the amish. 

Quoting elijahsmama09:

I live near many Amish farmers, who grow everything organically and I buy a ton from them.



momkaribg
by on Apr. 8, 2012 at 2:18 PM
We love to get food from the farmers market especially fruit.
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copperswifey
by on Apr. 8, 2012 at 4:20 PM

We do have a local farmers market. It is really small, but they have a few good things. We have gotten bison meat, maple syrup, honey, cranberries, raspberries, corn, watermelon and jams. Our kids are still pretty young to understand where they came from, but I will teach them when they get older. :)

momkaribg
by on Apr. 8, 2012 at 7:24 PM
So would I.

Quoting KristinRox:

I would love to have the opportunity to buy from the amish. 

Quoting elijahsmama09:

I live near many Amish farmers, who grow everything organically and I buy a ton from them.


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mamivon2
by on Apr. 9, 2012 at 12:22 AM

we do.. and I love it

amy7243
by on Apr. 9, 2012 at 9:54 AM

 We plant our own garden.

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