Jersey City celebrates National Farmers’ Market Week

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Jersey City will participate in National Farmers’ Market Week from Sunday, Aug. 4 through Saturday, Aug. 10 to highlight the importance farmers’ markets play in the nation’s food system.

Jersey City will join markets across the country in celebrating the 20th annual weeklong event.

Throughout the week the city’s Department of Health and Human Services will visit each market, providing giveaways and distributing information on staying healthy as well as the range of food services the city offers to those in need.

“We want to maximize enrollment in the food services we offer so that no one goes hungry on any given day,” said Mayor Steven Fulop. “By participating in Farmers’ Market Week, it’s our goal to continue to educate and spread awareness of these resources, especially as our farmers’ markets accept food vouchers. These markets are essential in providing residents with access to healthy, fresh and affordable food.”

As demand for local food continues to grow, so too have the opportunities for farmers to market fresh food directly to the consumer.

Jersey City is host to eight farmers’ markets throughout the city, all of which accept WIC and Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) vouchers and/or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits.

“We’ve had great success with the Riverview Farmers’ market over the years, which continues to grow and support our local economy while providing nutritious food to local residents and workers of all income levels,” said Beverly Brown of Farm in the Heights.

According to the USDA, farmers markets and farm stands account for roughly $2 billion of the $3 billion that Americans spend annually on farm-direct products. This revenue supports the livelihoods of more than 165,000 mostly small and mid-sized farms and ranches.

This year, the city’s independently run farmers’ markets are selling a wide variety of products, including fresh produce, meat, fish, cheese, baked goods, and prepared foods.

“Our markets play a vital role in connecting farmers directly with Jersey City residents, supporting sustainable agricultural practices and even aiding our efforts to reduce our carbon footprint,” said Mayor Fulop.

The community-supported markets are held weekly, and also host events such as live music performances, children’s activities, and more.