Farmers local food benefits community

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Sam McLemore

Many of the farmers give out samples to help sell their product.

Twice a week local farmers from around the state bring their food to Decatur. After setting up their tents, potential customers arrive, browsing the rows of fresh produce. Although the market isn’t stocked like a grocery store, it still has it’s own advantages and plenty of variety.

The farmers market occurs from nine o’clock to one o’clock across the street from the court house on Saturdays and in the Bank of America parking lot on Wednesdays. Over 25 vendors are registered with the farmers market and sell anything from fresh honey and milk to salmon and beef.

Because their food is grown locally these farmers believe that they have an advantage ecomonically over conventional grocery stores.

Dairy farmer Russell Johnston produces milk, butter, and cheese, that he delivers around to several local farmers markets. Johnston believes that local food is beneficial to both the farmers and the community. “The Decatur Farmers Market keeps jobs for local farmers while giving the community fresh local food,” Johnston said. “The farmers market supports small businesses, which make up a majority of the economy.”

The farmers also believe that their food is healthier than conventional grocery store food. Most of the farmers who go to the Decatur farmers market have certified naturally grown farms. These farms use no herbicides or pesticides and are completely natural.

Donna Lopes a local honey and egg farmer is one of the farmers who believes the food is healthier and tastes better. “The honey isn’t treated. It’s right from the hive,” Lopes said. “You can tell the difference between my honey and the honey from the store.” Many foods from the grocery store can have additives or preservatives.

The farmers market is a local event and brings in many people from different communities around Decatur. Although they are from different places, they all enjoy fresh, local food.