Ava Miller | Opinion Editor
November 4, 2022
Farmers’ markets have become increasingly popular in urban areas offering a wide display of ripe, local produce and farm-fresh organic dairy and egg options, all of which are not only better for the health of consumers but also better for the environment and the local farmers.
The produce offered at farmers’ markets is pricier and imperfect in appearance, but its nutritional value and overall taste is incredibly better 500 dollar loan. As opposed to fruits and vegetables grown for commercial purposes, farm fresh produce has a chance to naturally ripen and be picked and sold at its prime. Vendors at farmers’ markets skip the freezing and storage phase making them able to have perfectly ripe produce harvested at the peak of the season.
When asked what draws her to shop at local markets, Senior Maya Kernot, an avid farmers market goer said “Big corporations contaminate their produce with pesticides.”
The fruits and vegetables may not always look perfect, but this is yet another reason to support local farmers. It is an unknown fact that almost a quarter of all commercially grown produce gets thrown out due to a variety of reasons ranging from the color to the shape of the product. This drastic amount of food waste not only swipes millions of pounds of safe and edible produce out of the hands of the consumer, it also contributes to global warming, releasing unmeasurable amounts of methane gas as it decomposes in landfills. Knowing this validates the importance of consuming imperfectly shaped produce and supporting farmers who are willing to still sell it.
Local farmers’ markets also promote eating seasonally. Apples, squash, and pomegranates are just a few examples of fruits commonly harvested in the fall. Seasonally appropriate produce has more nutrition because it is grown in its desirable environment and able to experience the weather and water it needs. It does not require the usage of growth pesticides as it is able to ripen naturally. The produce at farmers’ markets are always a healthy, seasonal variety, enhancing the taste and the nutritional value and allowing the consumer to experience a multitude of fruits and vegetables as the seasons change.
Buying local is not only better for your diet and experience with healthy eating, but it also keeps money in your local economy instead of fueling a big manufacturer worth millions of dollars.
Kayla McLaughlin verified the reason she frequents farmers’ markets: “I know for a fact the produce is being grown organically and picked by the owners themselves”.
Buying goods at grocery stores sends your money all over the place. It has to benefit the grocery store, the company name you bought under, the production and preservation costs, and lastly, the farmers. This means that only a few cents from the bag of apples you buy go to the people that grew and picked it. Buying local keeps the money in the farmers’ hands and away from million-dollar corporations. McLaughlin said “They’re paying their workers the wages they deserve” demonstrating her understanding for the need to shop local and the importance of eliminating the middleman between the produce and your consumption.
Farmers’ markets that frequent the San Clemente area have produce primarily grown in the Fresno county area, a mecca for fruits and vegetables only about five hours away. The produce can be picked and transported to the farmers’ markets in less than one day, a win for your taste buds, the farmers, and your health.
I strongly believe that a personal vegetable garden is something everybody should be able to afford, but sadly this is not possible. So I support any initiative that brings local food to the citizen houses on the territory.