If you’re lucky enough to live near a farmer’s market, you know the value in perusing aisle after aisle of freshly-made baked goods, locally-grown produce, and expertly-prepared meats and cheeses. Oftentimes there are hidden gems at a farmer’s market that you could never find at a grocery store.
But if you don’t plan ahead or know what to look for, your trip to the market might not prove so successful. Get prepared with these tips!
Check the newspaper and social media.
Your local paper likely publishes a circular for the farmer’s market each week with coupons and information on special deals and items on sale. Page through it, and look for the most impressive offers.
Bounce around until you find your favorites.
Depending on the market’s size, there will probably be multiple fruit and vegetable stands, a few bakers, and a handful of butchers. Regulars will have their favorites, but you’ll need to shop around a little until you find your own.
Early birds get the worm.
If your farmer’s market opens at 8 a.m., get in the parking lot by 7:45 a.m. In many cases, doors will open a few minutes before the official open time, giving you a leg up and first dibs on the freshest items.
Shop with the season.
There’s no point in going to the market if you aren’t buying seasonal goods. You can buy anything out of season at the grocery store, but if you really want to make the most of market shopping, consider buying only what’s at its peak right now.
Ask for samples.
Most times proprietors will be happy to give you a taste of what they’re selling, and it can help you make the best decisions on what to buy. There are plenty of unique items to sample at farmer’s markets, and you won’t know what you like until you try.