Fair or not, farmers markets are often viewed as places where wealthy people shop for expensive organic produce. But this week The Atlantic wrote about several studies proving exactly the opposite, that overall the goods from farmers markets in various regions are less expensive than the same items at nearby grocery stores. Surprised?The studies — conducted in Vermont, Washington State and Iowa — compared farmers market and grocery store prices on a small selection of items. Among the conventionally-raised goods in one study, only eggs and potatoes were less expensive at the grocery store. And in that same study, every single organic item was almost 40 percent cheaper at the farmers markets.
This actually doesn't come as a surprise. While the biggest, busiest farmers markets in my area can be quite expensive, the smaller, neighborhood farmers market I frequent generally has prices that are much lower than the surrounding grocery stores, especially for organic produce and responsibly-raised eggs and meat.
Anjali is a former private chef who is currently pursuing a graduate degree in nutrition, with plans to become a registered dietitian. She lives in Los Angeles. You can read more of her health-focused writing at Eat Your Greens.
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