My former boss at the USDA, Tom Vilsack, recently signed a proclamation designating August 7-13, 2016 as “National Farmers Market Week.” This is the 17th annual event showcasing the important role that farmers markets play in local economies. We appreciate the USDA’s commitment here in California, where certified farmers markets have been in place since Governor Brown signed legislation creating them during his first stint in office in 1977.
California has approximately 700 certified farmers markets and about 2,200 certified producers selling in the markets. A little more than half are year-round. The rest are seasonal. These markets are now part of the fabric of many communities throughout the state. Here’s how to find one near you.
The high quality and fresh produce brought to certified farmers’ markets by its’ producers creates a diverse market and also provides consumers with opportunities to meet farmers and learn how their food supply is produced. This direct pathway for healthy, nutritious food is one of several ways in which consumers and farmers connect.
Certified farmers markets are an important source of fresh produce to many seniors and low-income families who can purchase fruits and vegetables through the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program; the Women, Infants and Children’s (WIC) Supplemental Nutrition Program; and the CalFresh program.
We are proud and pleased to offer these markets in California and look forward to partnering with the USDA next month during National Farmers Market Week!