Buying Direct — When you buy directly from a farmer, you get fresh, delicious, and healthy food at a competitive price and the farmer receives a fair value for their product.
You can buy directly from a local farm through farmers markets, farm stands, and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares. All of these options give you the same benefits of quality and community, and each also has its own special features.
But doesn’t it cost more?
Not necessarily! NOFA-VT has conducted two research projects studying the costs of produce at farmers markets and CSAs compared to grocery stores.
For certified organic produce, buying direct is usually less expensive than grocery stores, and even for conventional items, the price is often very competitive. In addition, more than half of Vermont’s farmers markets, and many farm stands and CSAs, accept 3SquaresVT (food stamps) benefits through EBT cards.
NOFA-VT also has programs that support limited-income Vermonters in accessing direct markets: NOFA-VT Farm Share Program for CSAs and Crop Cash that matches 3SquaresVT at farmers markets. Learn more on our website or call the office at 802-434-4122.
Why you should buy direct:
- Competitive pricing and value
- Quality and variety
- Support family farms
- Strengthen local economies
- Maintain working landscapes
- Know the story of your food