How to Save Money at Farmers Markets
Eating healthy can be expensive, and the high prices may discourage you from wanting to eat fresh produce. But you can get fresh, healthy produce from farmers markets, and you can support local businesses at the same time. Buying fruits and vegetables when they are in season will save you money, and so will these tips.
Buy in Bulk
Just like at the grocery store, buying in bulk saves you money. If the seller doesn’t have an advertised bulk deal, ask if there is a discount for a larger purchase. Don’t buy more than you can use, or your savings is wasted. Freeze or can extra produce, or ask friends and family if they would like to split the cost with you.
Shopping just before the farmers market ends can get you big discounts. You run the risk that popular items will be sold out, but you might be able to snag a great deal on what is left. This is especially true if the market is only open once a week or will be closed for several days. The grower doesn’t want to waste extra produce, so they will take less money in order to make a little profit.
Shop on Rainy Days
You can usually get great deals when the weather is bad. Rain, cold and even excessive heat drive away customers, so the farmer may offer discounts in order to get sales. Fewer customers also means that you can spend a few minutes talking to the farmer to build a relationship.
Like any business, farmers rely on repeat customers. Build a relationship with the farmer by complimenting his produce or making small talk. When he sees you visit his booth regularly, he may offer a discount for being a frequent customer.
At most markets, it is perfectly acceptable to haggle on prices. In some markets, it is even expected. Don’t be afraid to offer less than the asking price, but be polite when you ask. Don’t offer too low of a price because he may be insulted and less likely to give a discount.
Eating healthy doesn’t have to break your food budget. Farmers markets are a great way to save money on healthy, fresh produce, and you get a chance to know the person who grew your food and support your local economy.