If you live in Tacoma and you haven’t yet visited a Tacoma farmers market, you’ve been missing out.
Why Visit a Tacoma Farmers Market?
Farmers markets are becoming more and more popular. Consumers can choose from a wide range of fresh food and vegetables, most of it coming straight from the farm.
Sure, you can easily head to your local supermarket and grab a few things whenever you’re low on groceries. But it makes more sense to plan a visit to a Tacoma farmers market each week. Here’s why:
1. Healthy Food
When you have healthy food within easy reach at home, you’re less likely to make a bad decision and grab junk or fast food. When you shop at a local farmers market, you’ll have a huge choice of fresh, healthy food for you and your family.
Have you ever bought produce from a supermarket, only to get home and realize it’s rotten? If so, you need to do your shopping at a Tacoma farmers market instead.
Vendors at these markets actually care about the produce they’re selling. They’re often the same people who planted the seeds and pulled the produce from the ground.
2. Community Relationships
It’s easy to get so wrapped up in our own lives that we forget to support and be involved in our local community.
When you visit a Tacoma farmers market, you’ll be meeting locals from your community. You may make new friends, and you’ll be more invested in supporting the local farmers- since you’re personally involved.
It’s hard to know where a lot of our food comes from. By building a relationship with the local farmers, you can ask them questions about:
How the food is produced
How you should cook it
What new foods you should try
What to expect next season
When you build up a direct relationship with local farmers, they’re more likely to take your thoughts and opinions on board. Would you love to see a new type of pumpkin introduced? Or maybe you love a particular kind of tomato? It’s easier to let the farmers know your preferences if you’ve been buying from them every week.
Farmers markets are popular with people from all different walks of life. You’ll be mingling with a wide range of people- all of them aiming to buy healthy, safe, delicious, and fresh food.
3. Huge Savings
Did you know that the average American will spend $1200 on fast food in just one year? By visiting a Tacoma farmers market, you’ll have healthy alternatives on hand. That means that you can cook up a quick, cheap meal without resorting to McDonald’s.
The difference between the prices of food at your local grocery store and a Tacoma farmers market will vary depending on a number of factors. These include:
Thee types of food available
Whether it has been a good season for growing
But on average, expect to save at least 17% each year by shopping at a farmers market.
If you’re aiming to save money on your grocery bill, here are some ways to save money at your local farmers market:
Compare prices between different booths.
Make a list of what you’re looking for (but be prepared for substitutions).
Consider negotiating. Be respectful, but ask your vendors if they’re willing to throw in a few extra grapes or round down to the nearest dollar. This works best if you buy multiple items from one vendor or have built up a relationship over time.
Bring small change. This can help you bargain since many vendors will run short of smaller change like quarters and dollars.
Go in bad weather. On days when it’s raining or super hot, many people will avoid going to the Tacoma farmers market. If you’re looking for a bargain, go on the days when other people are less likely to be there.
Go just before closing. Most vendors are going to be more inclined to discount remaining food as the market comes to an end. If you visit just before the market wraps up, you can often get your weekly fruit and vegetables for a steal.
4. Supporting the Local Economy
Who run the world? Large corporations.
By buying from small, community businesses, you’re boosting your local economy. This is ideal if you’re trying to avoid putting your money in the pockets of massive global companies.
While a farmer’s family business may not have a physical store, most of these farmers reinvest their money back into the community. Local farmers are shopping at local stores. They’re also donating to school fundraisers and buying meals from local restaurants.
Buying from a Tacoma farmers market will help these families keep their land during tough economic times. It also allows that money to come full circle, as it’s usually spent in your local community.
5. Saving the Environment
Smaller local farms produce much less environmental waste compared to commercial farms. This includes chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and carbon monoxide. They’re also less likely to use huge sorting and processing machines.
Your local supermarket probably receives produce from other states or countries. These could be hundreds or thousands of miles away. Transporting this food is a significant use of fossil fuels which are used for rail cars and refrigerated trucks.
When you shop at a Tacoma farmers market, the food doesn’t have far to go when it’s transported from the farm to the market, and to your table. Farmers markets are usually held outside. They don’t require heating or electricity, which also helps save precious resources.
If you care about the earth, shopping at a farmers market is a great way to do your part and help save the environment.
Shopping at a Tacoma farmers market can also be a great teaching moment for your kids. You can explain the benefits of shopping local and the environmental implications while enjoying fresh local produce.
Planning to grab lunch after visiting the farmers market? Check out some of the great local restaurants in Tacoma.
Love shopping at your local farmers market? Leave a comment below and let us know which Tacoma farmers market you like the most.