Summer is almost here and farmers around the state are gearing up for the season. Despite persistent rains and cold weather, Minnesotans are looking ahead to warmer days and an abundance of fresh produce at the farmers markets. This year, expect some of your favorite produce items to arrive later than usual, but don’t worry about abundance.
Farmers use high tunnels, hoop houses, and greenhouses to beat the long Minnesota winter, and add extra weeks to the growing season. Right now, farmers markets are open and offer spring favorites like asparagus, rhubarb, leafy greens, and spring onions, all about to enter their peak season. In addition, you will see honey, maple syrup, baked goods, meat, cheese, and eggs, all grown right here in Minnesota. Green beans, kohlrabi, and cabbage are just around the corner.
Jerry Untiedt, a farmer from central Minnesota, spoke to the importance of local shoppers for his farm.
“People should be aware that we are counting on their support, and we are counting on a little bit more aggressive purchasing on their behalf because the selling season is reduced,” Untiedt said. “You have to remember that it’s the weather after the crops are planted that matters, not before.”
Spring weather has made the season challenging for many farmers, but they still hope to see people flocking to the markets statewide, said Danielle Daugaard, spokesperson for the Minnesota Grown program. Families can explore farmers markets to see what is in season, and vendors are happy to answer questions about cooking and share favorite recipes, she said.
It’s easy to find a farmers market near you by searching the 2019 Minnesota Grown printed directory, which contains 1,020 farms and 188 farmers markets. Go to the Minnesota Grown website to order your free directory or call 1-800-657-3878. You can also go paperless with our online directory, which allows you to search by product, city, zip code, or look along your route.
Larry Schumacher, MDA Communications