Jump to content
MrsSurvival Discussion Forums
Sign in to follow this  
kappydell

Are farmers' markets all that good for bulk purchases?

Recommended Posts

This week I went with a friend to the nearest "farmers' market".   In Georgia, they have state farmers' markets, and they are HUUUUGE, at least the one we went to was.  You shopped by driving u and down the aisles, looking at enormous displays - think 50 lb bags of onions, huge bins of produce for smaller amounts (under 5 lbs), and the like.  They even had a section for landscaping plants, and garden plants.  My friend wanted to buy boxes of strawberries, blueberries, apples & tomatoes in bulk to make salsa, jam and jelly.  I must admit my mind was blown by the sheer size of the place.  This was NOT amateur hour - many of the stands came in via semi.   So I would say, this farners' market was worthy of the name - did I say the prices were about half of what the cheap grocery stores are charging for fresh produce.  I was also able to purchase and try out a couple of vegetables I have heard about but could not purchase through "normal" channels....fresh habanero peppers and expecially the de-spined cactus pad (nopalitos?  something like that).  This morning I scraped the pads & sliced them and cooked them up.  Surprise, they were delicious.  So this one was a win-win.  The only problem is that it is over an hour trip to get there, so we won't be going again for a while.  I'm looking for closer ones....so far I have a lead on a stand that sells pecans cheap.  (Under $10 a pouind is cheap around here!)

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kappydell, I would love to visit one of those huge markets.  Our farmer's markets around here are usually small even though some producers do bring the produce in on small trucks.  I've generally found the prices comparable to the big grocery markets but the produce was usually fresher.  I have made deals with various venders for quantity buys though and have been really satisfied with those purchases.  We belonged to a CSA for a couple years but felt that produce, while nice and fresh, was higher priced than what we could find other places and there was little choice in what came weekly in the boxes.  It was, however, unsprayed and that was important to us and like you we got to try things we wouldn't have otherwise.  Unfortunately that farm is closed now and we haven't found another close to us. I am, however, considering contacting some of the farmer's market venders and other gardeners to see if I can commission them to grow certain crops for us that we can't grow ourselves in large quantities. :lois:

:bighug2:

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The farmer's markets around me are very small. Almost like backyard gardeners. You are very lucky. I wish we had something like that.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, kappydell said:

many of the stands came in via semi

 

Watched a video some time back about this.  These "farmers" were being checked out and it turned out they weren't farmers at all. They were buying from other places and some from south of our border, trucking them in and selling them as not only farm raised but as organic also.  When these "undercover" agents went checking addresses etc., they found empty lots, small garages and all sometimes just empty pastures.  Buyer beware.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We buy mostly from Amish/Mennonite Produce Auctions.  We have a very nice Farmer's Market here in our town.  They go inspect the farmer's  (mostly Amish etc.) that are growing and they have to be approved by those running the market.  We also have "cottage" laws in our state that take a look at people who want to sell things in public venues.  We also have two other smaller markets that are about an hour drive from here.  We steer clear of those out in parking lots under umbrella's or pickup truck loads because nearly all of them have purchased them from of our state's produce auctions and are re-selling them for a higher price.  We also have a lovely orchard about an hour's drive away, but they sell mostly in bulk and have become quite pricey.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, The WE2's said:

 

Watched a video some time back about this.  These "farmers" were being checked out and it turned out they weren't farmers at all. They were buying from other places and some from south of our border, trucking them in and selling them as not only farm raised but as organic also.  When these "undercover" agents went checking addresses etc., they found empty lots, small garages and all sometimes just empty pastures.  Buyer beware.

Yes, we noticed a lot of the produce was from Mexico even though they were supposed to be locally grown.  And you do have to check the produce - they are not above getting you a box "from the back" and helpfully loading it in the car for you, that is not all god quality...ye old "bait and switch" never goes out of style.  But we found quality was good IF you kept an eye on things....As far as being locally grown, I am guessing they are allowing imports of things out of season here.  The quality & price was still better than the grocer's.  
I miss the old "pick your own" farms.  I used to get grocery sacks (the paper kind, that hold half a bushel) of green beans, corn, tomatoes, etc very reasonably.  I suspect that liability insurance got too expensive, because nearly all of them are closed down now.  

:sigh:      They were nice while they lasted...

Edited by kappydell
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have noticed more venders here are importing produce to sell but we stick to those we have personally gotten of know over the years at our local markets.  We still have a pick your own farm near us but it's produce is heavily sprayed and not much cheaper.  Neither of us would be up to the picking even if it weren't.

 

 It's hard to find certified organic here and we will settle for just 'no chemicals used' produce.  That's one reason we chose to try a garden agsin this year but we keep our eyes open to other possibilities as well.  I love the road side stands that pop up here and there as long as I can see the gardens the produce came from before I buy.  Most of those here are just people wanting to sell their excess veggies or fruit.  

 

It it really is a buyer beware world today.  :(

Hugs

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oooohhhh...”..pick your own..”. I miss that too.  We used to have acres of vineyards that were pick your own, red, white, & seedless grapes.... mmmmmm. Usually only .05 cents per pound. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pick your own strawberries in MINN.   :happy0203:   I'd bring our DDs and nieces/nephew.   Looooong long ago.  :sigh: 

 

Never heard of one THAT big, Kappy!  Would be great fun....on a cloudy/not rainy day.  Otherwise I'd be scorched!  B)  

 

Our Farmer's Market in the mountains ...obviously transported in.  But many come from within CO at least.  But I stopped going years ago cuz of prices.  At this point it's "Safeway and Pray"....    Actually, Safeway has a Colorado Grown label on much of their produce tho.  That only means it's transported less distance and supporting local.  They do run an organic line .....tho I've never researched HOW organic that might be.

 

MtRider  :pc_coffee: 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, The WE2's said:

 

Watched a video some time back about this.  These "farmers" were being checked out and it turned out they weren't farmers at all. They were buying from other places and some from south of our border, trucking them in and selling them as not only farm raised but as organic also.  When these "undercover" agents went checking addresses etc., they found empty lots, small garages and all sometimes just empty pastures.  Buyer beware.

One of the markets here was the same.  What kind of potatoes are these?  "Sweet potatoes, ma'am" is a definitely "NO."   "These are garnets and those are beauregard" is likely to be a yes.  I learned to go around asking, or to go in with lists of people who post in the buy-local FB groups.

 

Kappy, you can grow nopales yourself.  Look for opuntia or prickly pear, if the seller doesn't know nopal or nopales.  The fruit is good too.  Plant in your poorest, dryest sandy spot--not because the cactus really likes it, but because it can survive that easier than it can getting crowded out by plants that need better soil/water.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have any of you eaten wild strawberries?  We have a small crop each year that just keep coming back.  They are larger this year and growing more plants.  The flowers are yellow.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had them here decades ago.  Drought, goats, ducks....  well, they are no more.  But while each one has an explosion of flavor...they are so itty bitty.  Also here, only one in a dozen actually produced a berry.  I think we might have a scarcity of pollinators up here.  :shrug: 

 

MtRider  :lois: 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't link from my Kindle but there is a website called  pickyourown.org  that has tons of information for individual states.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/11/2019 at 8:02 AM, Annarchy said:

pick your own

 

"When" we get moved and I'm gardening again, I'd like to plant a bit extra to let people come pick some of the produce that I don't plan to jar up.  Put a few dollars back into the gardening "purse". 

Edited by The WE2's
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a warning from our experience:  From what I've heard, privately passing some extra harvested food would be good.  Or selling it.  Having anyone you don't know VERY WELL, ripping things indiscriminately from your fine gardens....bad idea.  Even friends.  My gardening buddy tried to offer to her church friends.  "They don't know how."  "They don't have time."  "They don't know how to eat turnips, raw peas, squash."  They this and that ...and only one family shows up.  They failed to pick the area she showed them.  They picked the area she wanted to grow for next year's seeds.  And she wasn't charging them anything.  

 

UNBELIEVABLE but true. 

 

She invited DH and I.  I'd gardened with her at her place a couple years.  We scrupulously follow her directions and try to do some weeding and such for her as well as pick for us.  Right?  Of COURSE you'd do that. 

 

Not of course.  :scratchhead:  

 

MtRider  ...would it have been this way in the First Great Depression? 

Edited by Mt_Rider
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good observation Mt.Rider. People don't care about anyone's property these days. Look how they treat their own.

 

I'd also be concerned of a lawsuit. Little Johnny gets a scratch or stun by a bee on your property and it becomes your responsibility. Maybe harvest yourself and sell that way. :shrug:

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Mt_Rider said:

 

 

MtRider  ...would it have been this way in the First Great Depression? 

It would, and it was.  I've heard stories.  :(

  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.