Farmers’ markets are a wonderful treat…..I get such a thrill, each and every visit, from the atmosphere, the energy and the extraodinary effort by the dedicated vendors matched equally by the enthusiastic shopper. And…..there is so much more than meets the eye:
GREENMARKET FARMERS MARKETS
Greenmarket was founded in 1976 with a two-fold mission: to promote regional agriculture by providing small family farms the opportunity to sell their locally grown products directly to consumers, and to ensure that all New Yorkers have access to the freshest, most nutritious locally grown food the region has to offer.
What began over three decades ago with 12 farmers in a parking lot on 59th Street and 2nd Avenue in Manhattan has now grown to become the largest and most diverse outdoor urban farmers market network in the country, now with 54 markets, over 230 family farms and fishermenparticipating, and over 30,000 acres of farmland protected from development.
This unique relationship between farmers and city residents has not only changed the face of regional agriculture; it has revitalized rural communities and urban spaces, improved consumer health, provided fresh and nutritious food to those most in need through our EBT/Food Stamp and Youthmarket programs, supported immigrant farmers, encouraged crop diversity, educated school children and city residents about the importance of regional agriculture, provided a wholesaleopportunity for medium sized farms, inspired new culinary trends, and influenced chefs and eaters in one of the culinary capitals in the world.
Union Square Greenmarket in NYC is the “Grand Daddy” of them all.
During peak seasons, the Greenmarket serves more than 250,000 customers per week. More than one thousand varieties of fruits and vegetables can be found at the Greenmarket.
From NY Magazine by Steve Fishman:
Manhattan Gets Fresh
The greenmarket at Union Square brought new flavors to New York restaurants and home kitchens—and saved family farms in the bargain.