Subscribe -- FREE!
Shel Horowitz's monthly Clean and Green Newsletter
Receive these exciting bonuses: Seven Tips to Gain Marketing Traction as a Green Guerrilla plus Seven Weeks to a Greener Business
( Privacy Policy )

Farmers Markets and Farmstands

Shel Horowitz's Monthly Frugal Fun Tip for September, 2000, Vol. 4, No. 5

What am I thinking of with two food tips in a row? It's just that this won't do anyone much good if I wait until winter, and I'll have forgotten by next summer. I wanted to share it while it's still fresh in my mind. I've already written the next two issues, and I guarantee they are NOT about food! And next month's could save you a nice big pile of money over time.

On a trip to Boulder, Colorado, I experienced the best farmer's market of my life: Probably about 40 vendors offering luscious summer fruits (peaches, nectarines, cherries), inexpensive organic produce, goat cheese, Hmong sauces, breads and pastries, honey... Many of these vendors offered samples. There was even a food court with a wide array of lunch choices: delicious vegetarian corn tamales (from $2), giant pieroshki, Chinese dumplings, homemade ice cream... Our family of four ate a main course and dessert each for $17 total.

The expanded farmer's market has become a trend recently; It's a lot more than just vegetables now. Our local market in Amherst, Massachusetts is similar, though a bit smaller and without the food court. Its non-produce items include homemade fudge, handcrafted soaps, fancy herbal vinegars, among many other things. And a good percentage of roadside farmstands have also expanded their offerings; some have even morphed into full-fledged gourmet shops.

In the Northern Hemisphere, there's still a good two months left to enjoy the simple pleasure of a stroll through the farmer's market or a trip to a roadside stand. Not only will you get farm-fresh produce--often organic--at reasonable prices, you're also supporting local agriculture.

Sometimes there are real bargains to be had, especially if you can buy in bulk. A farmstand near me offers 50-pound (a bit over 20 kg) sacks of potatoes for $4. A crate of winter keeping squash at one of our local farmers markets is about the same, and a bushel of apples is usually about $6--even less if you pick your own. Squash and potatoes are good winter keepers, while fruit can be made into applesauce, dried, canned, or turned into jam. We even get our milk from a local farmstand, paying about a dollar less per half-gallon than for milk of comparable quality and lower freshness in the supermarket.

And, of course, these ways of shopping have a social aspect. Every week at our local farmer's market, I run into friends. Similarly, farmstands with a regular clientele often serve as a social center--especially if they've got a few tables and serve coffee, sandwiches, soup, and ice cream.

Return to the Frugal Fun Tips Archives
Preview Shel Horowitz's Penny Pinching Hedonist: How to Live Like Royalty with a Peasant's Pocketbook a 280-page e-book that shows you how to save a big pile of money on travel, dining, entertainment, recreation, and all sorts of other fun.
This article originally appeared in Shel Horowitz's Monthly Frugal Fun Tips. Please click here for your free subscription.

Share this article/site with a Friend

Bookmark Us

Many of the 1,000+ articles on Frugal Fun and Frugal Marketing have been gathered into magazines. If you'd like to read more great content on these topics, please click on the name of the magazine you'd like to visit.

Ethics Articles - Down to Business Magazine - Frugal & Fashionable Living Magazine
Global Travel Review - Global Arts Review - Peace & Politics Magazine
Frugal Marketing Tips - Frugal Fun Tips - Positive Power of Principled Profit

Clean and Green Marketing

Our Privacy Policy

Disclosures of Material Connections:
  • Some of the links on our site and items in our newsletters are sponsored ads or affiliate links. This financial support allows us to bring you the consistent high quality of information and constant flow of new content. Please thank our advertisers if you do business with them.
  • As is the case for most professional reviewers, many of the books I review on this site have been provided by the publisher or author, at no cost to me. I've also reviewed books that I bought, because they were worthy of your time. And I've also received dozens of review copies at no charge that do not get reviewed, either because they are not worthy or because they don't meet the subject criteria for this column, or simply because I haven't gotten around to them yet, since I only review one book per month. I have far more books in my office than I will ever read, and the receipt of a free book does not affect my review.

Site copyright © 1996-2011 by Shel Horowitz