Updated: Apr 4
Farmers markets in NYC are a big attraction for New Yorkers who need fresh and organic groceries. They are conveni
ently located all throughout the boroughs and offer a variety of fresh produce which is grown from local farmers in the nearby regions. To make the shopping experience minimal waste, I have laid out the below guide to help take advantage of all the offerings these markets have.
Locate a nearby market and find out the days and time they are open. Most markets are not o
pen everyday and they have different farmers selling on different days.
Bring cash. Most of the farmers do not accept credit cards or have a card minimum. In order to avoid rushing to an atm remember to bring cash.
Bring your own bags. It is always a good practice to have many bags with you, especially when you know you’re going to be shopping. My golden rule is to always bring more bags than you think you’ll need, in case you end up buying more than planned. Most of the produce in the markets is loose, so you can just put it in your bag or ask the farmer if they aren’t allowing contact. Yet, if the produce you want to buy is already in a bag, you can ask them to unwrap it and put it in yours. That way they can use the bag for another product. This might sound a bit tedious but most farmers do not mind helping!
Reuse the egg carton. Whether you purchased eggs at the market or anywhere else, don’t throw away the egg carton! You can bring it to the market and ask the dairy farmer to put the eggs you’re going to purchase there. It takes just 2 seconds as they can put the empty tray on top of the filled one, flip it and there you have a dozen eggs with no new packaging!
Bring your food scraps! Most markets have food composting bins where you can drop off your food scraps so they can be composted into nutritious soil. Just check on this website what days the compost bins are offered and read over their rules on what can get composted or not.
Use the whole product. If a root vegetable comes with leaves ask the farmer if there is anything you can use them for. Most likely they will have tips on how to cook them and what they taste like. I didn’t know you could eat radish and beets leaves until I was talking to a farmer and they s
hared how you can add the delicious leaves to salads or sautee them. This way you are technically getting 2 products for the price or 1, and you’re also avoiding food go to waste.