I’ll admit it; I have the time and I have the space, but I lacked the motivation to get out there and plant a garden this year. Thanks to the many farmer’s markets available throughout the area, I won’t have to do without fresh fruits and vegetables.
The reasons for shopping at a farmer’s market are as varied as the items you’ll find at these informal gatherings of people who have grown and harvested their own food to sell. Items such as homemade jellies and jams can be found; locally harvested fresh honey–you name it, you’ll likely find it at one or more of the markets.
Food that is grown and sold locally is fresher than that which has been shipped in from other locations. Less fuel is used to bring the product to market. The middle man (grocer) is eliminated from the fray. The money the you spend on products at the farmer’s market stays local and sustains Oklahoma farmers.
As consumers have become more health conscious and appreciate the nutritive value of locally grown produce as well as an increased interest in organically grown food, farmers are changing their methods of food distribution to include farmer’s markets.
Oklahoma has 28 farmer’s markets that sell only Oklahoma-grown fresh produce. Each of these markets are fully licensed by the Oklahoma Health Department and are registered with the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry. All 32 of the farmer’s markets listed at this site are fully registered and licensed; those with “ok” next to the town’s names are Oklahoma only produce.
Additional information about what fresh foods can be found in the markets in what months is available here.
While many of the farmer’s markets are open seasonally, May through October, the OSU/OKC Farmer’s Market is open year ’round, on Saturdays from 8AM-1PM at their site on Portland Avenue and Wednesdays from 2:30PM-7PM at their N.W. 63rd Street location.
Each farmer’s market may have its own unique flavor, depending on what type of vendors are at each location. Some markets have locally crafted arts and crafts, some have leather work, some have fresh meats, some have baked goods. It can be a nice outing to visit one or more farmer’s markets on a Saturday.
There is an open atmosphere, and in many cases you’ll be able to talk directly with the food producer.
Sources: Oklahoma Food Coop
OSU-OKC Farmer’s Market