Why is shopping at farmers markets good for you by CulturallyOurs

Why Shopping At Farmers Markets Is So Rewarding

Why is shopping at farmers markets good for you by CulturallyOurs

Summer is almost here in the northern hemisphere. The warm temperatures and bright sunshine is amazing for the mind, body and soul. Along with time spent outside, something that a lot of us look forward to is a weekly trip to a farmer’s market for some of the freshest in-season produce and homemade goodies. Nothing quite says summer like mornings spent at local farmers markets.

Paula Saalfeld of PlantifulTaste is taking us along a weekly trip to a local farmer’s market in Germany. She also shares why shopping at the weekly farmer is so rewarding for her and some tips on how to make the most out of a visit to a farmer’s market.

From Paula,

Early mornings on the farmers market are always a wonderful experience and bring so many benefits with it. I like to stroll from stall to stall to get inspired, discover new things each time and to shop in a slowed-down way. Weekly markets are a part of culture, a tradition that goes back in history to the early Middle Ages, when farmers traveled to the cities to offer their produce to the people. The markets often still take place exactly where they used to be – in the old city centre. It is a completely different experience to shop with this atmosphere, especially compared to crowded supermarket halls.Why is shopping at farmers markets good for you by CulturallyOurs fresh vegetablesIn Germany, only a very small proportion of people go shopping at markets, but the trend is rising as awareness and appreciation of our nature, environment and ecosystem increases.

So why is shopping at the weekly market so rewarding?

# It brings forth a sense of community

A really beautiful thing is the interaction you get, which makes it so worth trying every now and then. At the market you can expect warmth and kindness, the people there most likely enjoy what they are doing and their passion reflects in their produce. Many farmers like to tell you all the details about their products, what rarely happens to you in the supermarket. You can ask them any questions and often learn so many new things through their knowledge and years of experience.

# It supports the local economy

By supporting regional traders, you strengthen the region and keep the culture alive. The money goes to people who in return invest their profits in the region because they live here, do their agriculture, trade locally and create jobs for themselves and others. Furthermore, these products usually have the shortest transport routes, reduce the overall carbon footprint of produce production and are of higher quality.

# Shop for in-season fresh produce that is good for you

With the weekly changing offer you have a new experience every time you go to the markets. It is also extremely inspiring to simply go without a plan and see which fruits and vegetables are in season. So you allow yourself to create new recipes with what you have at hand. In addition, over time you will build a completely different connection to your food. You get the purest form, completely unprocessed produce and learn to see it from a different perspective. It might seem like it takes more more effort than just rushing through a supermarket, but step by step this mindfulness grows a greater appreciation for the food and the way you nourish yourself.

The perception of your meals differs a lot when you remember where your food actually comes from, prepare it yourself instead of buying a processed product in the supermarket. Also, it’s such a pleasure to take these vibrant goodies home with you.Why is shopping at farmers markets good for you by CulturallyOurs

# A way to reduce your plastic footprint

One of the things I appreciate most about shopping at the weekly market is that you can get the produce almost package-free. To transport my groceries, I take a basket, various fabric bags and a few paper bags with me, which I use several times.

That about 6.4 million tons of garbage ends up in our seas every year is probably not something new to you. Since plastic is not biodegradable, the particles remain in the sea for decades, becoming smaller and smaller through friction and warming until they can no longer be seen with the eyes, but still accumulate in our ecosystem and cause pollution.

In the supermarket most things are unfortunately not really eco friendly packaged, but when shopping at the farmer’s market you can really reduce your packaging amount to an absolute minimum.

Shopping at the weekly market is good for you, your region and our environment. So I encourage you to do a trip to the weekly market and look at it from a different angle – you’ll be amazed! And always keep in mind: Do your best and what’s possible for you, it is not about perfection! Just give it a try and see if you like it.Why is shopping at farmers markets good for you by CulturallyOurs

Tips for how to shop efficiently and effectively at farmers markets

  • Know your seasons and understand what is best at this moment
  • Arrive early for the best selection, or show up late for the best deals
  • Farmer’s markets tend to carry the freshest product so buy for the day or week
  • Get to know and build relationships with the local farmers and vendors
  • Buy more than just fruits and vegetables – many markets have handmade products likes fresh bread, soaps and jams
  • Bring small change so that the farmers and vendors are paid immediately rather than delayed payment via credit card

Thank you so much Paula. We completely agree with all the benefits you have laid out for shopping at local farmers markets. The produce is always so fresh and good for you and farm to table is far more beneficial than most of us realize.

Have you shopped at your local farmer’s market yet? Take us along and let us know what are some of the local delicacies you buy at your local market this summer.

{Words and Images by Paula Saalfeld; Instagram @plantifultaste }

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