Shop Local & Help Your Community
When the summer season approaches New England, so doesn’t the tasty options for fresh produce. Certain seasonal fruits and veggies, such as red bell peppers and corn on the cob, are in their prime during the summer season which means they pack a natural burst of delicious flavor when used in cooking. Though these seasonal veggies can be found at local grocery stores, have you ever considered giving back to your community through attending a local farmers market? A farmers market is generally a group of individual farmers, or vendors, who set up tables or stands at a designated area to sell locally grown items such as fresh produce, local eggs, pastries, plants and flowers and herbs. Often times, local farmers have the advantage of hand picking the freshest produce in its prime giving you high quality produce at a very fair price. The benefits for purchasing locally grown produce exceeds just great tasting food, but it also helps keep local farms in business during the year. When you think about your childhood growing up, wasn’t it the simple things that made your community as good as you remember? The fast cars and tall buildings, along with other franchise owned businesses, may have seemed to bring in more job opportunities, but in some cases have taken even more away. When a large business comes into a small community selling similar products for a competitive rate, small town businesses can have a hard time competing with their prices and lose out on making the sale. Purchasing local products not only helps out the small businesses but it also helps out the community. The people who attend local farmers markets are the same people who reside in your community. Building friendships with fellow residents at markets help the community to grow in a positive way, while at the same time giving back to the farmers who also reside in your community. In Western Massachusetts, the options for buying local are endless and offer many different Farmers Markets all throughout the Pioneer Valley. So next time your looking for all things fresh, consider checking out a farmers market and giving back to local farmers.