We’re all aware of the services provided by the nearby supermarket. It’s usually a branch of a chain of stores, and is a very convenient place to do our shopping.
Unfortunately, most people have been brought up in cities and wouldn’t know a rural, just-ripened farm tomato from a commercial one grown in factory-like greenhouses. They’re also usually unaware that the tomatoes are shipped green to be blasted with nitrogen and other gases to force ripeness. Then they’re unloaded and sit in warehouses until they’re divided up to be sent to supermarkets. The process could take up to a month, whereas farmers’ market tomatoes on display could have been picked in full ripeness within hours.
The same lack of knowlege applies to other vegetables and fruits. City folk may never know the pleasure of eating a peach or cob of corn that was ripened naturally by the sun and offered for sale within a few hours at a farmer’ market.
In addition to fresh fruit and vegetables, many farmers’ market merchants also offer fresh, farm-grown beef, pork and poultry. Those products are usually considerably fresher than the same items sold in supermarkets. Another plus factor is that they are not likely to be injected with hormones or other chemicals to speed up growth and add unnecessary fat so that profits can be boosted higher.
Customers who enjoy the unique taste of what is called “free range” animal meats or poultry will find excellent choices at many farmers’ markets. Large commercial production farms use economically-tight methods to keep their animals and poultry confined to small spaces, where they get little or no exercise and no choice of natural nutrition.
Many farmer-merchants who display their wares at farmers’ markets also bring home-made processed goods to sell. They include bacon, bologna, corned beef, ham, sausages and cheeses. Customers can also buy the freshest eggs, milk, ice cream and other favorites that boast much better flavor than similar commercial products.
Because autumn harvest also coincides with the upcoming seasonal holidays, farmers’ markets can offer the freshest and purest items. Most are without any chemicals nor preservatives, and they include pumpkins, cider, chicken, turkeys, home-baked breads, cakes and pies.
What you can expect from your autumn visit to a local the farmers’ market is something supermarkets can’t provide. That is the knowledge that you’re