Farmers Market Etiquette

| 7/24/2008 5:37:27 PM

If you’re anything like me, it’s not easy for you to saunter up to a vendor at the local farmers market and grill them about their growing practices. I’ve always felt funny asking for a tomato’s life history — it’s such a relief when the vendor posts a sign stating whether or not their product is organic. What if they do use pesticides, and you’re the 80th person that day to give them an unintentional guilt trip? It may not be pretty. Grist posted a handy farmers market etiquette guide to help you through the sometimes uncomfortable experience of exercising your right to know what you’re eating.

Lark Eshleman
6/28/2009 3:53:10 PM

As a frequent shopper at farmers' markets, and as a determined environmental "nut," I'm wondering how farmers' market owners feel about those of us who bring our own baskets or environmentally-friendly bags to market so we don't end up using plastic bags (ugh) or even paper bags to carry home our wonderful fruits and vegetables, etc. Any thoughts?

Barbara Pleasant_3
8/20/2008 7:39:08 PM

Just as there is etiquette to shopping, there are good manners for trading at the farmer's market, too. For the past two Saturdays, I took baskets of beautiful apples to my tiny local farmers market and set up a vendor table. I sold quite a few and gave away some, too. At the end of the day – the last 15 minutes – everyone happily trades their leftovers. (Until then, cash is the preferred medium of exchange.) This end-of-the-day trading has netted me some nice pieces of pottery, cheese, and an apple cake made with my own apples. Way cool if you ask me.

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