News Date: 05/04/2010
At an event in Fair Grove, Mo. yesterday evening, Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler named the Fair Grove Farmers’ Market the state’s best in 2010 - an honor awarded each year to a farmers’ market that sets the example of adding value to their communities and connecting farmers to consumers through fresh, local foods. The Fair Grove Farmers’ Market was applauded for its youth programs, educational outreach and producer development efforts.
“The Fair Grove Farmers’ Markets exemplifies how to maintain a successful market, offer fresh, locally-grown produce and provide programs to reach out to youth and their community,” said Dr. Hagler. “Farmers’ markets provide an affordable option for consumers to get to know the folks who produce their food. In doing so, these markets place a high quality product on consumer’s tables and more dollars in the producer’s pockets which is beneficial to both farmers and consumers.”
Located under a pavilion at the historic Wommack Mill in downtown Fair Grove, the market entered its eleventh season last week. The market is open every Wednesday in 2010 through Oct. 6, from 3:30 until 7 p.m. A “growers only” market, all goods sold (including crafts) are required to be produced by the vendor presenting them.
In addition to locally-sourced foods, flowers and crafts for sale, the Fair Grove Farmers’ Market regularly provides entertainment and demonstrations. Food service is also available from the market’s certified kitchen and children can learn about gardening at the market’s “Growing with Kids” program.
“It is such an honor to be recognized as the finest farmers’ market in the state,” said Debra VanBenthusen, manager of Fair Grove Farmers’ Market. “The Market members have worked so hard in the past few years to increase the awareness and importance of farmers’ markets. This award means so much to our community.”
The Farmers’ Market of the Year is sponsored annually by AgriMissouri and the Missouri Farmers’ Market Association. AgriMissouri, a program within the Missouri Department of Agriculture, promotes Missouri-grown agricultural products and assists producers in developing markets. The Missouri Farmers’ Market Association provides training and other services for community markets in Missouri. (Contact: Misti Preston, 573-751-8596)
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