Kent Farmers' Markets
PUBLISHED: 09:50 20 December 2010 | UPDATED: 18:17 20 February 2013
Why buying local is good for you and the economy
Kent Farmers Markets
Weve all done it. On the night of 31 December, many of us have morphed into a Bridget Jones (or in my case Brad Jones) promising ourselves that from tomorrow well eat more healthily, lose weight, stop drinking and take more exercise...as we polish off the Christmas tin of chocolates and drain the last glass of New Years Eve fizz (Chapel Down, of course).
Looking at many of the New Years resolution surveys shows we all long for similar things, with the desire to lose weight and take more exercise or even start exercising somewhere near the top of most peoples lists.
However, in a national survey in 2009, we turned more ethical and a commitment to recycle and become greener came third on our list of priorities; while in 2010, tough economic times made the determination to enjoy life more even more important than the perennial losing weight.
Looking at these findings, it occurs to us at Kent Farmers Market Association how a visit to a Farmers Market could be a much more enjoyable place to start fulfilling some of these common New Years Resolutions. So heres our list.
One of the best ways to achieve lasting weight loss is to eat a balanced diet all the time, rather than embarking on another crash-dieting fad. At your local Farmers Market you will find one of the freshest and widest selections of locally grown, seasonal fruit and vegetables. Many markets also offer a great range of fresh fish, which is a healthy, low-fat source of protein.
Farmers Markets offer a unique opportunity for shoppers to buy keenly priced produce, direct from the producer or grower. Small doesnt mean expensive, and because Farmers Markets cut out the middle man, you buy direct and get the best value for money.
Shopping at your local Farmers Market ensures you support local farmers who care about the environment we share. Youll also be investing in your local community and producers from the surrounding area. Every 10 spent with a Farmers Market is worth 25 to the local economy, compared with just 14 for every 10 spent in a supermarket. Most markets run a regular cake and refreshments stall in aid of local charities, too.
Often bringing new life to village halls, beautiful village greens or historic houses and churches, what could be more relaxing than wandering around a Farmers Market, and avoiding the risk of trolley rage in a packed supermarket?
Spend more time with family and friends
Farmers Markets are great social occasions; a regular opportunity to bump into friends. Many stage themed markets for all the family, from Easter and Christmas, to Apple Day and Halloween, so the children can have fun too.
Farmers Markets offer a fantastic selection of Kentish-produced non-alcoholic drinks, such as juices from a range of apple varieties, to kick start a spell of non-drinking. And if, like me, you are more realistically aiming to cut down rather than cut out, many markets have a great choice of locally brewed beers and ciders and wine produced from Kents growing number of vineyards.
Learn something new
Every time you visit a Farmers Market there is a unique opportunity to learn something new by chatting to the friendly stallholders. Whether its artisan bread or cheese making youre interested in, or you want to know what makes rare breed meat more tasty, theres plenty to learn by chatting to each of the suppliers you buy from.
Get fit/start exercising
While Kents Farmers Markets themselves cant promise you fitness, with more than 40 markets theres one near you (visit the Kent Farmers Market website). So why not take a brisk walk or a bike ride to market and leave the car at home, or pick a market in the countryside and combine it with a local walk?
Enjoy life more
If you want to enjoy life more then a Farmers Market is a great place to get back to the Good Life. The markets give you a unique opportunity to see, feel, touch and taste the wholesome and high quality food. Then theres strolling around with family and friends, the socialising and the chance to enjoy many of the special events whether its bobbing apples, pumpkin carving or carol singing.
Even find true love!
With all this socialising, and a shared interest in food, some people might find a new romance. And if not, we are sure youll fall in love with the whole experience of shopping at your local Farmers Market!
To contact the Kent Farmers Market Association: