The local produce market is held in Crawley on the second Sunday of the month in Queens Square. Produce comes from Sussex, Surrey, Kent and Hampshire, and includes a wide variety of fruit, vegetables, meat, breads, cakes and cheeses. Thriving farmers markets have a lot to offer our town centres and there are many great reasons to shop there and support local farmers.
One of the best things about local produce markets and farmers markets is the quality of the food on offer. Fruit and veg that hasn’t had to travel very far is likely to be fresher than what you can get in a supermarket while bakery good and preserves retain their delicious, homemade flavours. I find prices compare quite favourably - they might be a little more than a supermarket rather than a lot more and well worth it when you consider the quality.
Buying local produce can also be a greener option. By definition, local produce hasn’t travelled very far so its carbon footprint tends to be quite low. Not only that but buying better quality food usually means less food waste. Tasteless supermarket food can often be false economy, ending up in the bin while you go out to find something nicer for dinner; on the other hand, cook a joint of delicious free range meat and you’ll eat it all and pick the bones clean.
Supporting local farmers is really important too. For many of us, the unusual and extreme weather of the last year has messed up our plans and waterlogged our gardens. But for farmers, there have been much more serious consequences, particularly for livestock farmers, many of whom lost young animals in the late snows we saw this spring. If we want to go on buying locally sourced food, it’s important that we support those farmers so they can continue to produce it.
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