The Stuart Farmers’ Market joins markets across the country in celebrating National Farmers Market Week which runs August 7-13.
In the midst of a global pandemic, farmers markets — like all other small businesses — have innovated to continue operations for the farmers and communities that depend on them. Farmers markets foster direct relationships between community members and farmers which can work to create a more fair and sustainable food system. Farmers markets are a hub for connection and collective action around shared values.
National Farmers Market Week is an annual celebration of farmers markets coordinated by the Farmers Market Coalition, a membership-based nonprofit organization that supports farmers markets nationwide through training, technical assistance, and network-building. This year, the campaign is centered around the essential role that farmers market operators play in our local food systems and in developing resilience in communities as hubs for local economies and connection.
The Stuart Farmers’ Market located in Downtown Stuart, 320 Chestnut Avenue, began its current structure in 2012, and currently hosts 15-20 farmers selling a wide variety of products, including locally grown fruits and vegetables, pasture raised beef and chicken, farm fresh eggs, local honey, baked items, locally roasted coffee and handmade crafts.
“Our Market is a weekly community event. Residents come to shop and meet up with friends. We also work with 4-H to host the Rise & Shine market, which is a youth entrepreneurship program vendor program this year. They have set up during our market and it has been great to see the kids and adult vendors interacting with each other and customers,” said Rebecca Adcock, vice-mayor and market promoter.
Several vendors participate in the Senior Farm Fresh vouchers. Last season and this season, the market worked with the West Piedmont Planning District in purchasing food from its vendors for delivery to homebound seniors in the county.
“Farmers markets are abundant sources of food, connection and resilience in our communities across the country, but they don’t just happen on their own.” said Ben Feldman, executive director of the Farmers Market Coalition. “Behind the scenes of every successful farmers’ market is a dedicated person or team working to make the market thrive. These farmers market operators are experts who need community and financial support to run their markets and resources specifically designed for their needs. Throughout National Farmers Market Week 2022, we will be highlighting the vital work of farmers market operators across the nation. Join us!”
The Stuart Farmers’ Market is on Fridays, 8 a.m. to noon. The market is open until the Friday before Thanksgiving and reopens for Mistletoe Market on Saturday December 3, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.