One of the best things about country living is the accessibility of fresh farm produce! Some people who choose to live in a rural community also choose to garden or hobby farm, however stopping by a neighbor’s farm stand or visiting the local farmers market is a great way to make contact with another producer – and learn more about their growing practices.
You can pack a lot of tasty nutrition into a fruit and vegetable basket, and purchasing directly from a farmer, local food co-op or agriculture subscription service keep the choices fresh and interesting.
Where’s the Fresh Food?
Looking for fresh farm produce near you? Michigan Farmers Market Association offers an online county guide to farms, markets, food hubs and specialty producers in Michigan.
The Wisconsin Farmers Market Association has also published an online guide to markets by county.
And importantly, this helpful article lists common sense safety guidelines for shopping in a public market during a pandemic. (Don’t touch the produce!)
When Should I Buy It?
Plan ahead with these seasonal MI/WI produce calendars and enjoy a wide variety of fresh flavors when fruits and vegetables taste their very best:
Note: Check the market's hours of operation, which may have changed due to COVID-19 restrictions. Look for information on the market's website or social media.
How Do I Cook It?
The perks of shopping at farmers markets for fruits and vegetables are, a) knowing your produce is peak-in-season and ready to eat, and b) being able to discuss food preparation with the person who grew it!
Additional information and recipes are just a click away, with many sites highlighting fruit and veggie favorites. Try the variety of great recipe ideas at Michigan Eats, or the Michigan Fresh recipes and food fact sheets from Michigan State University Extension. (Not-so-secret prep tip: everything tastes better with cheese!)
It’s finally the season to relax on your porch or patio with a big salad of farm fresh greens and a glass of chilled white wine from a Michigan or Wisconsin winery. After an uncertain spring we all deserve to celebrate, and a summer evening with family and a locally grown dinner hits the spot. Cheers!