A while back, I shared my top three ways to save money on groceries. One way is to shop at different stores when you know you can get a better deal on something somewhere else. For example, I recommend buying all of your fresh produce at your local farmers market. Farmers markets almost always have better prices and a bigger selection than a typical grocery store. That being said, here are a few shopping tips to help you save even more at the farmers market!
- Make a list. Go to the farmers market with a list of all of the fruits and veggies you’ll need for the week and in what quantity—then stick to it. The farmers market is an exciting place, full of exotic fruits and vegetables you’ve never seen before. It can be tempting to indulge your curiosity. However, the more you venture away from your list, the more money you’ll spend. Just add it to your list for next time!
- Arrive late. Farmers markets tend to be busier earlier in the day, but if you go later in the afternoon, you might be able to get some better-than-expected bargains! Sometimes sellers are motivated to give their sales an extra boost before closing down for the day. That means, they’re more willing to negotiate on the price of those pineapples! And, the more you buy, the more negotiating power you have!
- Shop in-season. Fruits and vegetables have natural growing seasons. It’s why squash is more popular in fall and winter, and strawberries are a summer favorite. That doesn’t mean you can’t find these things outside of their natural season but, because it’s more work to grow them or source them in, you will pay more for them. If you shop for in-season fruits and vegetables, you will find an abundance of them at the farmers market and therefore, they will be more affordable and your money will go farther. Here’s the seasonality guide I use.
- Store properly. Once you get your fresh finds home, be sure to store them properly. Some things do better in the fridge than others. Check out this article from Real Simple magazine to see how to properly store fruits and veggies so that they last longer. Don’t let your food (or money) go to waste!
All of these things are simple ideas but in my experience, they go a long way to save you money at the farmers market. Remember, when you shop at local farmers markets, you’re supporting entrepreneurs and their families!