Farmers’ Markets

photo of a farmers' market in Kent Co.By definition, a farmers’ market is a group of farmers and vendors retailing various food products and plants. Farmers’ markets are excellent places to buy fresh, healthy foods while also supporting your local economy.

Delaware recently became the third state to launch cyber-crop and cyber-shop programs. The website www.deagtrader.org is modeled after projects developed by the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland’s National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education. Local governments can encourage their residents to visit www.localharvest.org/csa to get involved in community-supported agriculture (CSA) initiatives. CSA programs benefit farmers and consumers alike. Consumers are able to purchase local, seasonal, produce while giving farmers a better idea of how much to plant. Consumers may also help farmers in other ways (e.g., maintaining a website or helping out on the farm) in exchange for a share of the produce.

Additionally, the Delaware Department of Agriculture (DDA) and the state’s Government Information Center (GIC) recently released a new mobile application for locating Delaware Fresh produce at all on-farm and farmers markets in the state. The free iPhone app provides a map of market locations, market names, addresses, contact information such as phone numbers, email and/or websites (if available), hour of operation, and a description of available items. 

DDA also provides a Delaware Agriculture Directory (PDF).  This directory provides information on farmers’ markets, Christmas tree farms, garden centers, creameries, and public riding stables throughout the state.  For more on starting a farmers’ market, please see the guide to Starting and Strengthening Farmers’ Markets in Pennsylvania (PDF). This guide provides helpful information on planning a farmers’ market and ideas on promoting the market, including various contests and cooking demos.