At the Farmers' Market

Our favorite thing to do on Saturday mornings is to grab our grocery totes and head down to our local farmers’ market. Sometimes, our grocery lists are long, and sometimes, we simply just stroll around and enjoy the smell of freshly baked bread.

There’s something special about picking out tonight’s dinner ingredients at a market stand, versus in the grocery store. Somehow, the colors of the vegetables seem brighter, the milk seems fresher, and the herbs are still covered in dirt in the best of ways. As we’re walking around smelling, squeezing and grabbing ingredients, the streets are gradually getting busier as the city is slowly beginning to wake up. Around us, more and more people are coming out from their buildings and heading for the nearest brunch spot.

There’s this one particular market in Philadelphia that we like to visit, and it’s mostly run by Amish farmers. Every time we walk by, there’s a young girl, maybe seven or eight years old, standing by the flowers while assembling small, ornate bouquets. As people walk by, she looks up from her flowers and gives them the most sincere and mature smile you could ever imagine, and just like that, everyone’s day is off to a great start.

Purchasing organic, locally grown products at a farmers’ market is not only benefitting yourself, but also the local farmers and our planet. Since locally grown food is seasonal and doesn’t have to be transferred as far, its negative impact on the environment is far less significant compared to purchasing food grown in a different country or continent. Some other perks of eating locally grown food is that the farmers can tell you exactly how the food was grown, who it was grown by and what went into the process. Since preservation methods aren’t required in the same way for locally grown food, it’s safe to say that it’s the way to go if you’re trying to avoid pesticides. Furthermore, it’s also more nutritious and flavorful.

Although everyone doesn’t have access to a farmers’ market, or the time to pick and choose between stores for different ingredients, it’s good to be aware of the different impacts that food consumption has on our planet. Eating seasonal food and being mindful when grocery shopping is a great start to a healthier life and a happier planet.

Jennifer Jansch