If You Shop Farmers Market

ninnymary

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Totally agree with you Steve. I don't like resellers either especially when they LIE about where their produce comes from! I can't believe they were dumb enough to leave the stickers on.

Our farmer's markets are small and vendors post their farm's name. The farms are pretty well known here in the bay area and you even know which restuarants buy from which vendors. Farms are always mentioned in articles and restuarant menus.

I know that is probably not the norm in the rest of the country.

Mary
 

AMKuska

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I'm a little surprised. I ran a farmer's market stall in 2016, taking produce and eggs from my garden. I learned a lot. In order to sell at our farmer's market though your garden had to be inspected, the chicken pens looked at, and a ton of paperwork filled out.
 

Lickbranchfarm

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Can we assume, volume is limited as well as what is in season?
I've never seen more volume at the market we attend that would have made me believe it wasn't a home garden operation. I imagine huge volume would be the first red flag for the Ag department. but no I've never heard of a volume limit.

Yearly I have to submit an application for approval which is rather lengthy, have my scales inspected and approved, Have a farm inspection, the table at the market has to have the farm name and address legible across the front, (my wife had some stickers made with the farm label, she sticks them on every bag) Any packaged merchandise (shrink wrap etc.) must have a NCDA approved label attached. Its a lot for the little return you make. Sometimes it can be rewarding, but like I said, I'd rather have customers come to the farm and make their purchase. This way they can see what their getting, and were they get it from.
 

flowerbug

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Can we assume, volume is limited as well as what is in season?
with a few acres you can produce quite a bit, in the tons of food category, yes, for sure... intensive veggie gardening done by someone who knows what they're doing can be pretty productive.
 

Nyboy

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Flea markets here will often have a couple of produce stands. Fruit is very big. In NYC there is a fruit store on almost every block all owned by Koreans.
 

bobm

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What you see on the farm is NOT what you get... about 3 ears ago, our son and his wife ( live in Portland, Ore ) signed up to bet a bi- weekly box of "organic farm grown" fruits and veggies from a CSA. His wife's sister recommended it. So, my wife and I drove to this farm to check them out to see if we would also order it. The farm consisted of 14 acres and had an orchard of various fruit trees, vegetable gardens and a field of sweet corn. They also had a hen house with about a half acre for a pen for about 100 hens of various colored breeds and about a half were white leghorns who laid organic eggs. The owner wife gave us a tour, and when we were going back to our car, the owner husband had just drove home in a 2 ton enclosed truck and was unloading boxes of produce labeled with national brands into a large shed /barn. I could see many of these types of boxes stacked inside this building. So, thanks but NO THANKS. Son cancelled their order too.
 

Nyboy

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On the flip side my friend Kristine works at a local orchard owned by a famous family. Every item in store is grown on orchard, they have 2 flocks of chickens all cage free one organic. They are working on producing a hard cider.
 

Ridgerunner

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There will always be someone that tries to work the system. When I was working I firmly believed you get what you inspect. If you order an offshore platform, a compressor, an underwater cable, whatever, if you don't have your own inspector that you trust in there looking at it as it is being built don't expect top quality. Some farmer's markets are going to have specific rules and inspect to see that they are followed. Others, not really. Each state is going to have their own rules about selling food products, some more rigid than others. Some cities and counties have their own rules. Some are enforced, some are not.

I don't paint all farmer's markets with one broad brush. They are different in what they sell, how they are organized, and how rigidly they enforce whatever rules they have. I'm not going to say that all vendors at a farmer's market produce all they sell, they don't anymore than all roadside vendors produce all they sell. I'm also not going to say that all vendors are really selling bulk produced stuff, some of them produce it themselves.

Let the buyer beware. It is up to you to do your due diligence and decide what you want to buy. Whether that is just get it, chat with them until you are satisfied, or do what Bob did and go see for yourself.
 

ninnymary

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Ridge, the problem I have that as part of your due diligence you ask where it came from or who grew it and they don't tell you the truth! For some of us that is all that we have the time for. I'm not going to drive 1.5 hours or more to check out a farm. I also don't mind resell as long as they are telling people that's what it is.

Mary
 

Ridgerunner

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I understand Mary, I don't have that kind of time either, especially for just a bit from a farmer's market. Sometimes you just have to decide if you trust them or not based on conversation. If I do buy something and the taste is not there the trust is gone. Some things you can't tell that much difference but some things you sure can.
 
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