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August 5-11 is Farmers' Market Week
Enjoy Jersey Fresh farm products!
For Immediate Release: August 1, 2001 Contact:

Hope Gruzlovic


Acting Governor Donald DiFrancesco has declared August 5-11 as Farmers' Market Week in New Jersey. The proclamation mirrors one issued by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman and encourages New Jerseyans to visit their local farmers' markets and to enjoy the bountiful harvest of Jersey Fresh fruits and vegetables they'll find there. To mark the week, Agriculture Secretary Art Brown will visit the Hoboken Farmers' Market on August 7 and the Jersey Fresh Farmers' Market of Lacey Township in Forked River on August 10. "Farmers' markets offer consumers a varied selection of delicious, nutritious fruits and vegetables locally grown and freshly picked," said Brown. "There is nothing that can compare to the taste of Garden State fruits and vegetables picked just hours before you bite into them." New Jersey's farmers' markets date back to the 1600s. Currently, there are 35 urban farmers' markets attended by more than 150 farmers in over 30 municipalities throughout the state. Urban markets usually cater to several different consumer groups, including the residents of the surrounding area, those who work in the area and those who travel through the area on their way to work or other destinations. No matter what brings shoppers to the farmers' market, they are likely to become loyal patrons. "Urban farmers' markets have enjoyed a tremendous resurgence of popularity in the past several years," Brown noted. "They bring a new sense of community to the host cities and offer a colorful, enjoyable place where consumers can buy the freshest locally-grown produce available."
Brown said customers also value the chance to talk directly to the farmers who grow the produce they buy. "One of the most important results of a farmers' market is the person-to-person bond that's created between the farmers and their customers," he noted. "The farmers get to know what kinds of produce their customers like and customers experiment with fruits and vegetables they may not have enjoyed before." The urban farmers' markets operate on various days and times during the week. For a listing of the farmers' markets and their operating hours, contact the New Jersey Council of Farmers and Communities (NJCFC) at (973) 236-1875 or visit their web site at www.njcfc.org. The Garden State also boasts nearly 400 markets right on the farm. Some are open year round, some seasonally and many offer a wide variety of family-oriented events throughout the year. For a complete listing of farm markets in their area, consumers can contact NJDA's Division of Markets at (609) 292-8853 or visit the department's web site at www.state.nj.us/agriculture.