Some are mingling in the crowd, some are coming and going, and others are just trying to make a deal. Saturday morning at the local farmer’s market is more than just a business.
“A good day is when my table is sold out,” Margie Jackson said of her booth at the Concho Valley Farmer’s Market.
Jackson has been the president of the farmer’s market for 16 years. She explained that everything that is sold comes from within a 75-mile radius of San Angelo. It is a seasonal market; after the first freeze of the winter the merchants are done selling.
Jackson said, “I tell people how lucky San Angelo is to have this.”
Arturo Cordova appreciates what the market offers and is a frequent buyer at the farmer’s market.
“I come at least once or twice a week,” Cordova said.
He chooses to buy his fruits and vegetables locally rather than at grocery stores because of the increased quality and freshness he finds at the market. After coming so often for many years, Cordova has also gotten to know the vendors.
Julia Fail comes from Houston to help at her aunt’s booth. She finds that there is a variety of products to choose from even in a smaller city like San Angelo.
“We have some farmer’s markets back home, but I’ve never been. I come all the way to San Angelo to get the freshest vegetables,” Fail said.
Prices for organic and local produce can be relatively expensive. In larger cities, the prices often go higher than at grocery stores.
According to the Farmers Market Coalition, “Farmer’s markets also bring business to neighboring stores and communities where the market is located.”
By spending money at local markets, your money remains in circulation within the community, preserving and creating local jobs.
However, for the vendors at the Concho Valley Farmer’s Market, Jackson says: “This is strictly a hobby.” She noted that low prices are maintained because the vendors sell for the fun of it.
Jackson continued to point around the pavilion telling the stories of the vendors: “He’s a doctor at Shannon. They over there are big-time farmers; they don’t have to do this. That other family, they sent their children to college from their sales here.”
And as she identified more and more people who have other day jobs, Jackson concluded, “It’s all about community.”
The Concho Valley Farmer’s Market is open at 7:30 in morning every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. The season starts at in May and ends after the first freeze of the winter. For more information contact Margie Jackson at (325) 651-5460.