August 5th -11th is National Farmers’ Market Week!

When I think of summer I think of heat, the shore, and fresh produce.  All of which I can attribute to growing up in Vineland, NJ – the largest city in New Jersey by square miles and a big farming city (see map below if you’ve never heard of it).

That’s right, I grew up on a farm.  My family grew and sold produce at a little stand at the end of my grandparents’ driveway.  We rode on tractors (and loved it), picked bugs off the plants, and ate fresh food right off the vine. I’m a produce-a-holic, eating more in a day than most eat in a week. I’m grateful I live here, because nothing beats Jersey produce and that’s a statement I’ll take to the grave!

After my grandparents passed, the extra land was sold and the farm became a memory, but one that I’ll always remember because it made me appreciate the closest thing I have to those memories… Farmers Markets.

Each summer I eagerly anticipate their openings.

From fruits and vegetables to meats and cheeses, you can find almost anything you’re looking for at a reasonable price and absolutely fresh.  You meet the farmer and his/her family who’ve taken the time to ensure you a quality product.

Not only are they delivering a product and service, but they are also helping build up the agricultural community, which faltered once big grocery stores popped up everywhere.  Convenience and mass production took the place of quality and that can be seen in the countless health issues plaguing people today (but that’s a whole topic on its own).

So, now I ask – do you buy at your local Farmers Market?  If so, where is your favorite? With the responses I receive, I’ll compile a list of favorites and include them in a new post.

By: Lauren Scarpa

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