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Two local farmers markets; two on the way

By Susan Hawkins

Extension Horticulture Agent, Davie County Center

National Farmers Market Week is Aug. 2-8 .

Many of us are familiar with our local farmers markets as places where we can connect with farmers and buy fresh local produce, as well as locally raised meat and eggs. But farmers markets do much more for the community than that.

Farmers markets can contribute to the health of a people in the community. Having a farmers market in a community means increased access to fresh fruit and vegetables. Some studies have shown that people who shop at a farmers market eat more fruits and vegetables than those who do not. Increased consumption of fruits and vegetables has been shown to lead to increased health, besides just being really tasty.

Farmers markets can help increase not just the physical health of a community, but its economic health. Dollars spent at farmers markets go directly to local producers. The farmers spend money in the community. Ultimately this creates greater prosperity for the community and has even been shown to create new jobs.

In a time when most people do not grow their own food, farmers at farmers markets also serve as educators when they explain to customers how their food is grown. People come to understand the care and effort that goes into the food they eat. Consumers are then connected to their food in a way that they cannot be when buying produce from a national chain.

If you haven’t visited a farmers market before, National Farmers Market Week is a great time to start.

Here in Davie County we have two established markets.

• The Mocksville Farmers Market is held on Wednesdays from 3-6 p.m. at Junker’s Mill Outdoor Theatre at 107 S. Salisbury St.

• The Bermuda Run Farmers Market is held on Fridays from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at 190 NC 801 S.

• And to add to the bounty, the Davie County Farmers Market scene is slated to expand soon. Smith Grove UMC is planning two new farmers markets to start later this summer. One market will be held on Saturday mornings at Smith Grove UMC at 3492 US 158. The second market is planned for Cooleemee on Thursday evenings and will be held at the former Cooleemee United Methodist Church at 197 Main St. The markets are in the process of being organized.

Celebrate National Farmers Market Week by visiting a local farmers market. And be sure to thank the farmers for all their hard work when you do.