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San Diego's Farmers' Markets: Fresh Is Best

Farmers' markets can be found nearly every day of the week.

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Harvest season in San Diego is a long one, and one thing is as certain to be found around the county as a warm sunny day: crops of fresh produce ripe for the picking. Oh, no, we’re not talking about those big, perfectly scrubbed and decidedly tasteless things you find in your local supermarket, force-ripened and grown in some foreign land. No sirree. We’re talking about home grown fruits and vegetables from right here in San Diego County. We’re talking about our beloved neighborhood certified Farmers' Markets.

Not only can farmers' markets be found almost every day of the week throughout San Diego county, but they’re also a year-round occurrence (ah, the beauty of perfect weather). But it’s during spring and summer when you find the local bumper crops of fruits, vegetables and flowers grown by Southern California farmers. And as a certified farmers' market, the State of California ensures that the produce is being sold by the grower, is grown in California and meets all California quality standards.

According to the San Diego County Farm Bureau, these criteria ensure that you receive the freshest produce for the right price. In fact, the County Farm Bureau says more than 6,000 farmers work to make agriculture a billion dollar industry in San Diego County. Many of our county's growers operate small family farms, with 65% harvesting nine acres or less. They have developed a reputation for quality, high-value specialty crops. And that’s where the neighborhood farmers markets come in.

Any day except Monday, you’ll find an outdoor farmers' market operating in a nearby neighborhood or city. Although many of the growers frequent the same various markets, but each market is unique in that they take on the characteristics of their neighborhood. The outdoor stalls and farmers faces may appear the same, but the ambience is different at each market.

Grab a bunch of fresh, colorful flowers along with other office workers at the Horton Square market downtown. Take in the stunning bayside view while picking up fresh green beans in Coronado. Hit the boardwalk after grabbing some fresh tomatoes in Pacific Beach. A basket of fresh strawberries and antiques go well together while in La Mesa village. The eclectic hustle and bustle of Hillcrest is almost as attractive as the exotic persimmons and cherimoyas. And you can say you went shopping in La Jolla and came home with bags of purchases!

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