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Do all farmers markets in Florida stink?

I've had it! Over the last few years I've tried to convince myself that famers markets in Florida (at least in my neck of South Florida) were getting better and more plentiful. Well, more plentiful, yes. Better, I'm not so sure.

The reason for the diatribe was that this weekend I got roped into going to a new (at least to me) farmers market in the Mayfair mall in Coconut Grove. Parking was a pain but after a few minutes found something about a block away. As we approached we saw the ubiquitous tents; however, as we walked among the vendors here's what we found:

- someone selling sunglasses
- someone providing massages and other healing activities
- a bread vendor
- a colombian empanada vendor
- someone selling incense and other frangrance products
- someone selling live baby turtles (which, by the way, I thought was illegal given that the turtles carry tons of salmonella)

and at the end of the parade of tents, a woman selling fruit and vegetables from boxes that looked like they could have been from Publix. This event was so pathetic it doesn't deserve as much time as I'm spending complaining about it. But I had to get it out there and see if anyone else has had as bad an experience. Or, better yet, can someone point me in the direction of a decent farmers market?

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  1. Judging by my visit to the Lincoln Road "farmers market" this Sunday (and I use the quotes because I defy anyone to find me an actual farmer there) ... yes.

    Flowers, orchids, juice stands, lemonade stands, sno-cone stands, guacamole stands (when did this start? and what exactly is appealing about a gigantic batch of guacamole festerng uncovered in the sun for hours?) ... and maybe one or two booths selling South American produce out of boxes that pretty obviously were bought wholesale that morning.

    1. AGREE! Don't know about Dade or Palm Beach county, but Broward county hasn't seen a farmer since the last of the you-pickem farms closed down four or five years ago.

      12 Replies
      1. re: cucuzza

        The green market in WPB is very good. In season at least it is held along Flagler near St Ann's church. It has been on Saturday and the parking is excellent as there is a municipal parking garage adjacent to it and it is free for the time the green market is in operation. Excellent cheeses, the freshest of veggies and good and varied fresh baked goods. Included are a couple of "stands" where you can refresh yourself with beverages (coffee, latte etc) and sit where you find room breakfast fare prepared on the spot. I haven't found better. The one in Delray Beach used to be very good but declined drastically when it moved or was moved to Atlantic Ave and to be frank I am not sure it still exists.

        1. re: cucuzza

          I was terribly disappointed in the Velusia County Farmers Market, more a flea market than anything else. Being from Orange County, California, where they have a certified farmers market almost every day in one location or another, stalls packed with fresh vegetables and fruit and home made goods, it was a shame.

          1. re: EclecticEater

            The Flea and Farmer's Market in Volusia County is OK for produce -- nothing out of the ordinary, but good strawberries and tomatoes in season. But yeah, it's a flea market, with a small couple of corners that are devoted to produce.

            I'm told there's another on City Island, but that's not an area I go to often, so. . .*shrug*

            1. re: Covert Ops

              If you're looking in V county you might also try the one at Flagler Beach pier . . . it's not very big, and I think it runs Friday morning not Saturday, but they had plenty of good locally-grown stuff when I was last there about 2 months ago, it's a true farmers' market, albeit small.

              1. re: Covert Ops

                Are you talking about the Daytona Flea & Farmers' Market, or the Volusia County market Wednesday mornings at the fairgrounds? I've never been to the latter.

                Also, what about the downtown Deland market on Saturdays? Anyone been there?

                1. re: fishandveggiesplease

                  Sorry for the late reply . . . I'm suggesting the Flagler Beach market where Hwy 100 meets A1A near the Flagler Beach pier. NO, it's not in Volusia County, it's in Flager . . . I'm just suggesting it for anyone who's also considering the markets in / around V county.

            2. re: cucuzza

              The You-Pick farms are gone? That's a damn shame, one of my fondest memories of growing up in Miami is going to the You-Pick farms with my parents. They were run by Mennonites who made amazing strawberry milkshakes.

              1. re: Kosmonaut

                No more You-Picks, because florida builders are greedy. they buy the land and put up craptastic apartment complexes.

                1. re: Kosmonaut

                  No, the one you're thinking of still exists. Way down south, by I forget what school. Knauss Berry Farm, I believe. Still has great strawberry milkshakes, cinnamon buns and rolls. There's also that one by Monkey Jungle that was still in existence last I checked. I felt their strawberry milkshakes were superior, but that's just my opinion.

                    1. re: Pandabug

                      Yep, found it:

                      Knaus Berry Farm
                      15980 SW 248th St
                      Homestead, FL 33031

                      Only open from November to April.

                    2. re: Kosmonaut

                      there r some u picks in Sanford

                  1. I've had some good luck at the Sarasota farmer's market. There were several vendors that obviously were just re-sellers, but there were also a few that sold their own produce. All in all, it was a decent scene. I still prefer the Red Barn in Bradenton, however, even though it's a flea market, not a farmer's market.

                    I just moved to South Florida a few months ago, and I've only been to the Swap Shops, which, again, are more flea markets than farmer's markets. I did see some interesting asian produce at the Margate one.

                    1. In Central Florida...

                      My favorite so far has been one stand featuring real "NJ" tomatoes.

                      1. up in Safety Harbor we have a rather small but decent farmers market. Pretty good local produce. My complaint though, the new season starts next week but instead of having it on Saturday mornings as in the past it's now on Thursday morning. Well I guess I can go down to St. Pete on the weekend it's suppose to be pretty good.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: donh

                          That is my frustration also. I understand there is a weekly farmer's market in Oldsmar also -- on Wednesdays. I work during the week. I'm not inclined to drive all the way to St. Pete for produce either.

                          1. re: LJBTampa

                            I've averaged traveling to the St Pete Market about twice a month since they opened the season. I always find farmers to chat with about their produce and great prepared foods to snack on. What Tampa Bay Markets are still open after May? Is it worth braving a Florida Summer for them? I only know of Ybor and that answer is a straight up no. I don't want sunglasses at a farmer's market unless they can show me they grew the lenses.

                          2. re: donh

                            I've wintered in the St. Pete area for three years. They have some good farmers markets. One I recall is in downtown Gulfport, but I don't recall the day/morning. Lots of fresh veggies and some fruits. I used to get good tomatoes, asparagus, greens, onions, potoatoes, strawberries and corn there, but they had much more....took credit cards as well as cash.....a few jewelry/household decor/stuff vendors on the street, too, but the market was the main draw.

                          3. you're better off skipping the farmers markets. they tend to attract the very types of vendors you've described.

                            instead, look for semi-permament to permanent roadside vegetable stands -- often not much more than a tin shack or somesuch.

                            1. Believe it or not, the produce at the Daytona Beach Flea Market (right off 95 at the Speedway exit) is above average. I mean, I'm not normally a farmers market (or farm anything) type of gal, but DH is very picky about tomatoes, and the ones they bring over from Ruskin are fantastic. ALSO strawberries in season -- I don't spring extra for the Plant City ones, the others (I forget where they're from, somewhere else on the west coast) are plenty great, $4 for a flat. I brought them to a Super Bowl potluck instead of a cooked dish and they were demolished.

                              I went last weekend and saw several people selling citrus, but for citrus I'd go farther south -- at least to Merritt Island or Harvey's in Rockledge. Best lil citrus farm I ever went to was way up in Merritt Island on Rt. 3 north of SR 528, 2 or 3 miles south of the Space Center entrance.

                              1. Here in Tampa, I have a great farmer's market a whole block long a few blocks from my house. Some vendors are there all week, but most on Sunday. Cheap prices, good produce, no fuss, no sunglasses. all produce!

                                5 Replies
                                1. re: andy huse

                                  Andy,if a vendor is at the market all week when does he have time to "farm"?

                                  1. re: cucuzza

                                    If you habla espanol, you could ask the vendors yourself.

                                    Someone was asking about farmers markets and i replied that i knew a good one. I can get cheap produce, including tomatillos, chilis dried and fresh, and plenty of strange looking tropical fruit.

                                    It is located on the south side of Hillsborough Avenue near 22nd street. No sunglasses, just produce. Correction: they do most business on Saturdays, not sunday.

                                    1. re: andy huse

                                      that's the Sanwa market where most of the restaurants go to get their produce wholesale

                                      1. re: andy huse

                                        I like that one a lot. Be sure to get someone to hack open a chilled young coconut for you to drink while you are there.

                                        1. re: andy huse

                                          Yeah that's the Sanwa Farmers Market, it's pretty interesting. We go there to pick up some items from time to time...

                                          Here's their website. They've posted the hours that the general public can shop there.
                                          http://www.sanwagrowers.com/

                                    2. Our Saturday Winter Park Farmers Market is quite nice. Two businesses that specialize in hydroponics, especially tomatoes, are very good. Spices, home made sausage, etc.

                                      Downtown Orlando Sunday Market has gotten better, but no match for Winter Park.

                                      Bob

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Bob Mervine

                                        Where exactly is this in Winter Park? I wanna go!

                                        1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                          It's held at a facility that was a warehouse, located next to the train tracks near downtown.
                                          Winter Park Farmers' Market
                                          407-599-3358
                                          Corner of Lyman and New York Avenues
                                          Open every Saturday from 7 a.m. - 1 p.m.
                                          I also found an interesting site that lists all the markets in the state along with contact information and, if they have one, a Web site.

                                          http://www.florida-agriculture.com/co...

                                          Bob

                                      2. When I lived in Gainesville, we always went to the farmer's market there. Amazing stuff, like what I find in VA now (used to find before the stupid snow shows up).

                                        1. The best farmer's market in South Florida used to be West Palm Beach, which is a bit far for me to travel.

                                          I go to the Green Market in Pompano Beach - a very good seafood vendor with varieties like cobia and hog snapper that might be hard to come by elsewhere. Great smoked fish, too.

                                          The produce vendors there are local (one labels the fruits and vegetables with where they were grown), but if something isn't in season, it's not going to be local.

                                          It's got a few non-food booths, but is not a flea market.

                                          In South Florida most of the agricultural operations are not "mom & pop" farms, so it's unlikely you will find a farmer at a farmer's market.

                                          1. Where and when is the Pompano Green Market?

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: lax2mia

                                              I'll be darned.

                                              http://www.florida-agriculture.com/co...

                                              Pompano Beach Green Market

                                              Market Location:
                                              100 N.E. First Street, across from City Hall
                                              Pompano Beach, Florida
                                              Broward County

                                              Open-air, year-round
                                              October through May
                                              Saturdays, 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

                                              Contact Information:
                                              Dan Hobby
                                              P.O. Box 154
                                              Pompano Beach, FL 33061
                                              Phone: (954) 782-3015

                                              Email: greenmarket@pompanohistory.com

                                              And here's the full list from the Florida Dept. of Ag website:
                                              http://www.florida-agriculture.com/co...

                                            2. This morning's Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale) has an article on Green Markets in Broward & Palm Beach Counties.

                                              http://www.sun-sentinel.com/features/...

                                              1. There's a farmer's market on sundays in Hollywood on the boardwalk in front of Oceanwalk near Hollywood Blvd and A1A. The market is actually run by a real farmer. They've extended it to run all year. It's not very big though.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: dianelilith

                                                  It's Josh's Organic Market: http://www.southflorida.com/custom/ho...

                                                  It can be much more expensive than Whole Foods, but there's usually a good variety.

                                                2. Really sad, but if I want great produce I just go to Whole Foods and pay 3x what I should...I love S. Florida as a 2nd generation Native but, what's gone is gone....

                                                  1. Not exactly a farmers market even though they call themselves that, Laurenzo's Farmers Market at 16385 W Dixie Hwy, North Miami Beach has really good fresh herbs, tomatoes and a better than Publix quality and selection of other fruit and veg.

                                                    Worth a trip because it's a two-fer -- Laurenzo's Italian Market is right next door where I stock up on wine and food treasures.

                                                    And I just found this but haven't been...
                                                    2006 Best, Miami New Times:
                                                    BEST FARMERS' MARKET South Florida Farmers Market 8287 SW 124th Street Pinecrest 305-255-2468 http://store.gardnersmarkets.com/farm... From relatively exotic items to basic organic produce...

                                                    1. This farmers market is actually at Gardners Market and is not that impressive (not at all). I have been several times and was disappointed each time. As a Miami native, I have found that most of the famers markets in dade are not great.

                                                      1. We have a great one right off of I-95 at Woolbright Rd. in Boynton Beach:

                                                        http://woolbrightfarmersmarket.com/

                                                        Run by a wonderful Greek family...I tried our local CSA last year for 1 week and quit...came back to our local market!

                                                        ~Gail

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: gabbyh

                                                          Thanks for posting this! I'll definitely go check it out. It's Honeybell season now!

                                                          1. re: gabbyh

                                                            Gail - was this the Redlands CSA? If so, can you give me some details? I was considering signing up this July. Thanks!

                                                            --Lisa

                                                          2. Get ready. The two meager farmers markets in Miami open this weekend and next. The one at Gardner's in Pinecrest actually has local growers present and is th better of the two. It's Sundays 8 to 1. Coral Gables Farmers Market starts next Saturday and it's gotten worse every year. They used to have someone there selling passion fruit, sapotes, etc. but he left because of little demand. Instead people focus on the citrus and flower booths.

                                                            Maybe it's not the farmers markets that stink, maybe its the sucky uneducated Miamians?

                                                            9 Replies
                                                            1. re: lax2mia

                                                              Miami is the pits! We moved here from Europe and it's remarkable how people here have absolutely no appreciation for quality of food!

                                                              There is a farmer selling very expensive organic produce on Grand Avenue in Coconut Grove (it's Glaser Farms), but the quality is generally OK. We recently joined an organic produce buying club and so far have been impressed with the freshness and the quality and the price. I do miss the nice farmers markets we were used to in Europe, however. Maybe one day the Miamians will evolve and become more enlightened about these things

                                                              1. re: ezhfjs

                                                                Tell me more about the organic produce club - I believe I saw something about one that worked with local farmers a couple months ago. Is it the one where you pick up your veg every week from a pick-up spot? How does it work, what do they have?

                                                                1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                  EZ - you've hit the nail on the head. Nowhere else have I seen people more excited about buying a plastic wrapped potato labeled as "perfect for microwaving" as here. It's so pathetic.

                                                                  Is the buying club the same as a CSA? If so, I was a member of one a few summers ago. It was fairly expensive but you got a variety of fruits and vegetables not found at local supermarkets. If this club is something different I'd love to know about it.

                                                                  As for the Glaser Farms market, it's basically a Whole Foods or Wild Oats but under a tent. Not worth it at all.

                                                                  1. re: lax2mia

                                                                    I agree...EZ is right on point! My family spends 5-6 weeks in Berlin every other year and the ease with which one can go to the Bio-laden to get organic food far exceeds our ability. In fact, even when the product is decent here, it may have been grown in California. As far as Glasers in the Grove, it's like a cross between buying a Saab or Volvo -- cache but average quality and attending a vintage Grateful Dead concert. Whole Foods, Wild Oats, the exorbitant Fresh Market, and the need to be a millionaire, non-organic Norman Brothers which is local are alternatives. However, all things considered, despite the fact that it is not organic, given that it is entirely locally grown, therefore sustainability choice number 1, I think Knauss is the best bet of all. Plus, their offerings are legitimately delicious!

                                                                  2. re: Frodnesor

                                                                    The way the South Florida buying club works is that you join a group in your area. Every two weeks you go to the local club host's home to pick up your fruit and veg - approximately 30lbs of organic produce split between fruits and vegetables (last order was lemons, oranges, apples, kiwis, plum tomatoes, lettuce, kale, carrots, cabbage, bell peppers, potatoes, garlic, shallots, cauliflower, avocados, etc.) It costs $43, and so far it there has been good quality and variety. At the pick up, the host has "bonus" produce, so if for example you would like extra apples in your order you can take some from the bonus at no additional charge.

                                                                    So far the only drawback is that you don't have control over what you get, but so far it hasn't been an issue. We have only been in the group for one month.

                                                                    The URL for the organic buying club is:

                                                                    http://www.organicbuyingclubsofla.com/

                                                                    1. re: ezhfjs

                                                                      Thanks. I take it that must be organic but not necessarily local. I had previously looked into a co-op of Redlands farmers that did something similar, but didn't do it this year.

                                                                      1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                        Frod,

                                                                        Are you sure about the CSA not being done this year? Here's a link to the one I used a couple of years ago. It may be too late now. though.

                                                                        http://www.redlandorganics.com/CSA.htm

                                                                    2. re: ezhfjs

                                                                      To be more accurate, the US is the pits in terms of good produce and food. Our food has been so processed that most Americans look for bland vs something that tastes like food. If I buy the organic chicken at WF or some other place, my husband doesn't like to eat it because it tastes too much like "chicken." I'm not kidding. I basically buy one type of food for my son and myself (minimally processed, organic, etc) and the opposite for him. Unfortunately for me, I have to stick to Publix or Whole Foods for organic etc due to lack of time and $ for the more expensive. sigh....

                                                                  3. I go to the produce market at the Oldsmar flea market. Only about a 10 min ride from my house in Tampa. They always have nice, fresh, reasonably priced produce.

                                                                    1. From Jan. through Mar., there's a small market, on Saturday mornings, in front of City Hall in Coral Gables. Not many vendors, but there are bakers, plants and other growers....

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: bookhall

                                                                        And not a farmer or grower in sight.

                                                                        1. re: lax2mia

                                                                          Gee whiz, these guys must have snuck in under false pretenses.... http://mywebpages.comcast.net/hallg1/...

                                                                      2. lax>

                                                                        Been to the Coconut Grove Market at 3300 Grand/Margaret?

                                                                        Saturdays only.

                                                                        AG

                                                                        (thinking about Loteria...)

                                                                        1. The produce at Knauss in the Redlands of South Dade is terrific though not organic. The tomatoes are U-pick, $1.00 per pound, and taste absolutely terrific. Lettuce, onions, peppers, and beets are also great as are the strawberries. Also, on the weekends, there is a large, cheap market at Bargain Town(I don't know what it's really called)on US 1 near SW 264th St. where reasonably edible things can be had, especially ethnic Central American, Mexican, and Caribbean things. But it can't touch Knauss for taste and freshness.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: crach

                                                                            just an FYI, Knauss has the BEST cinnamon rolls ever

                                                                          2. Temple Citrus in Naples has an attached produce stand that sells nothing but produce. It's located on Airport Rd., south of Orange Blossom.

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: TomOHaver

                                                                              Also the church/school at Lakewood & Davis Blvds. in Naples has a pretty decent showing on Saturday mornings. Some jewelery and junk but also home grown tomatoes (yum!) and herbs, jalapenos, limes, etc. Everything seems to cost $1 for the basket full. I got like 30 jalapenos for $1. Oh, and local honey and jams, and a lady that bakes 10 +/- different kinds of bread - really good!

                                                                            2. Went to the Coral Gables Farmers Market this weekend and it was as disappointing as ever. I'm thinking of just taking up some space on the new Biscayne Blvd. median and growing things myself.

                                                                              1. The Saturday farmer's market in downtown West Palm was always a pretty good one. Lots of good produce, baked goods, orchids and flowers, Bahamian conch chowder and fritters, etc. Same folks year after year. Sure do miss it.

                                                                                1. Winter Park Farmers Market is horrible. It is overcrowded with people there to be seen or with their dogs. The produce is not all too spectacular, but if you want a place to push your dog in a stroller, it might be your thing.

                                                                                  Eola Sunday Market was woeful the only time I ventured out there, but they were doing reconstruction at Lake Eola. Their website lists 1 vegetable vendor. I used to enjoy the Saturday Market under I-4.

                                                                                  The best "Farmers" markets in Orlando, are the small ethnic vegetable markets in the stripmalls.

                                                                                  College Park's ORganic market was nice while it lasted.

                                                                                  1. No one has mentioned the St Pete Farmer's Market. I haven't been, but plan to check it out this weekend. A wonderful vendor at the Dunedin Farmer's Market told us that it's the best in the Southeast, hands-down. Also said they have a wide variety of organic produce and products. Does anyone have a review of the St Pete market?

                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: laurie

                                                                                      The St Pete Saturday Morning Market is wonderful! Great produce and very good prices! A fun place to be on Saturdays!!!

                                                                                      1. re: laurie

                                                                                        I've been to the St Pete Saturday morning market many times over the years and it IS excellent. But they DO call it "St Pete Satuday Morning Market" not "Farmer's Market". There IS very good produce and organics (and a wonderful cheese purveyor that occaisionally has fresh farm eggs) but is mostly the sunglass, art/craft, entertainment market that people are complaining about. But is IS really fun. Great music too.

                                                                                      2. You know, I'm somewhat shocked to say this, but I was just at Publix today (Miami Shores location around 90th & Biscayne) and was actually impressed by the selection, particularly of organic (and locally grown!) produce. I don't know if I just somehow never noticed before or if they're actually doing a better job of stocking, but I was able to find good-looking, organic, Florida-grown strawberries (my kids made a pint disappear almost immediately after I got them home), tomatoes (they actually have some flavor), and green beans, plus actually fresh-looking organic red peppers (from Mexico), celery and carrots (source unkown). I'm so used to such a wretched display in the organic section that maybe I've not paid attention, but everything was crisp and fresh and actually somewhat inspiring to cook. I wonder if this was just luck of the draw (it is presumably the season for Florida produce given our weird "seasons") or whether Publix is actually making more of an effort.

                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                          Frod- I have found that that Publix on 90th and Biscayne generally has better produce than others I frequent (Beach, Biscayne and 32nd, Brickell) and their organic produce section is larger too.

                                                                                          1. re: miachef

                                                                                            That's my usual Publix as well and indeed it often has a very solid choice of organic produce and generally better quality all around.

                                                                                            1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                              I've also recently noticed an upgraded organic push at several Publixs.

                                                                                              I think it is entirely attributable to the heat they are feeling from the Whole Foods&Wild Oats combo and Fresh Markets. Competition forces you to sharpen your pencil and in this area Publix hasn't had much since Winn-D was put in IC (hard to remember they once dominated the market(no pun intended)).

                                                                                              So hurray for us cause that means that only will we continue to have better and more variety it should sooner or later also COST LESS.

                                                                                        2. Just happened to see your post now and thought I would mention the South Florida Farmer's Market. It is only open from January to April, Sunday's from 8:00 am to 1:00pm in the parking lot of Gardner's Market in Pinecrest. It is small and not pretty, but it actually carries locally grown/organic produce (though it does have a few "trucked in fakers", too)

                                                                                          There is also an organic co-op and various other farms/markets in the Redlands and Homestead areas. Hope this helps!

                                                                                          1. Just saw in a local paper that there's going to be a "Green Market" at Legion Park (Biscayne & 66th) on Saturdays starting Jan. 12. As to whether or not it's going to stink, can't say.

                                                                                            1. I took myself to the Delray Beach organic farmer's market a couple of weeks ago. What a shame! Expensive and most pathetic offerings, I saw a stall holder add broccoli to his stall from a regular broccoli produce box kept under the table and charging way more than a supermarket. I would have loved to have challenged him.

                                                                                              Nothing worth buying at all from the 3 stalls that actually sold produce, the rest were candles, soaps, windchimes and the usual hippy type stuff at overinflated prices.

                                                                                              btw is the Boca Farmers market still open on US1? is it worthwhile?

                                                                                              1. Actually the one here in Sarasota is pretty good and getting better. Things can not be re-sold but must be handcrafted. There is a variety of goods - especially from Sarasota Candle Company and a much loved and often returned to Sunny Day Soap Company which makes and sells the best soaps ever with names like Florida Beach Bum. I confess - I adore the market and it's people. I do wish that there was more produce - especially locally grown and with much more emphasis on variety. Best of luck on your hunt for the ever elusive authentic farmers market.

                                                                                                  1. re: 2top

                                                                                                    I go there all the time and buy things. Most of the clientele is Central American, Mexican actually, and the offerings year round are plentiful and cheap, there are at least 15 stalls. The greater flea market has all kinds of cool stuff including food stalls with various regional specialties. That's the good news. The downside is that the typical client is also not very discriminating, so there is a lot of imported sketchy stuff for sale, and nothing organic. However, as I recently joined the local CSA and became more attuned to buying locally, I began to ask the venders what was local and found cabbage, jalapenos, bell peppers, tomatoes and avocados last weekend. Moreover, the most delicious produce in the area is near this market, at Knaus on 248th Street. Their produce is absolutely delicious. Finally, yesterday I visited the disgustingly touristic and therefore gougingly priced (sorry) Robert Is Here where, to my happy surprise, Robert had all sorts of fine local and exotic stuff clearly marked.

                                                                                                    1. re: taiga

                                                                                                      Have you ever tried the taco trucks in back?

                                                                                                      1. re: eatnbmerry

                                                                                                        Yes. I think they are cool and interesting, but this type of everyday Mexican fare does little for me. I do, however, love the variations on salsas.

                                                                                                  2. Hi, I'm new to the area...does anyone know where there is a quality farmers markets which has a quality craft market attached. Sarasota and the especially St. Petesburg are both fantastic saturday markets with good produce and good crafts but we are looking for good markets on other days...help...We make a quality high-end handmade product and nothing is more dissapointing than being in a market next to someone who is just reselling cheap imported rubbish.

                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                    1. re: marbymar

                                                                                                      Downtown Punta Gorda has a good one on Saturdays and there is also one on Sunday on Shreve sponsered by the Historical Society.

                                                                                                    2. I just thought I would second that exact question/comment! Live in Orlando and it stinks! Winter Park isn't really convenient, although it's nice when I do get there. But the Celebration Farmers Market is pathetic. What I love most when I go to a new farmers market is seeing vegetables in plastic wrap, exactly what you might find in your local supermarket. What happened to farming? Buying locally? Does it even exist anymore!

                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                      1. re: mmuch

                                                                                                        I agree! the only farmers market i actually consider worth going to is the Audubon Community Market in Winter Park http://apmarket.wordpress.com/. You can be a vendor only if your product is locally made, grown or caught. They have local honey, chocolate, seafood, produce, clothing, bread, plants, foods, etc. One of my favorites is Big Wheel Provisions; they are a charcuterie and catering company that makes food from locally sourced ingredients (like right now they have eggnog, honey butter, crostinis, so much more). Old Hearth sells there too and so does Wild Ocean Seafood Market and the UCF arboretum.

                                                                                                      2. Did anyone check out the Upper Eastside Market yesterday? Biscayne Blvd. around 65th, I believe at Legion Park.

                                                                                                        http://www.miamigov.com/cms/comm/1724...

                                                                                                        I drove by but didn't have a chance to check out. Didn't look terribly promising unfortunately. Orchids, prepared foods, saw one booth with some fruit and veg, the most prominent of which I could see was pineapple (not among the tropical fruits typically grown locally).

                                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                          Actually it was okay. I went and there were three or four tables with produce, veggies, and whatever - and it was still WAY better than the Lincoln Road farmer's market, even though it's much smaller in size. There were plenty of people checking it out though. Mango & Lime also did a report on it.

                                                                                                          http://mangoandlime.net/2008/01/12/up...

                                                                                                          Some notables - uncommon mushrooms, onions, and even purple peppers. Farm fresh eggs were expensive (as reported in Mango & Lime) but the berries were going for a good price. I was tempted to buy them on the spot, but I didn't have cash with me. It's a pretty decent small-offering uber-small sized "farmer's market" for Upper Eastside (especially considering they don't really have an alternative option except to drive farther down to Coconut Grove, Homestead or up to Hollywood) unless if they're willing to get the fresh produce early in the morning at La Guardia Produce & Mini Market at NW 2nd Avenue & 34th Street (nothing unique and exotic here though - but good prices for good produce can be found. Cash only.).

                                                                                                          Later that day though, i went to Coconut Grove Farmer's Market - and that one was really nice although I must say it leans heavily on vegan-friendly offerings. There's more exotic and rare items in that farmer's market. But I would have to say some things are just not palatable to the average Miami crowd. Organic, non-dairy ice cream was okay. The dried "inventions" (as I called it) of _____ (enter tropical fruit) and coconut into some type of round disk-paste is unsweet and definitely an acquired taste (but probably popular among Vegans).

                                                                                                          And when comparing with Josh's Organic in Hollywood, the Coconut Grove Farmer's Market has more variety and the prices are slightly higher (still, not worth the drive from Miami unless if you really want to buy a lot of organic produce, which is just about the only thing Josh's seems to be known for).

                                                                                                          1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                            mango & lime did a good write up, though she was more polite with her comments than I'm going to be. It was the usual disappointment of a market, but my expectations have lessened over the years. The only table with local produce was the one pictured by m&l; however, the pleasantly ladies working behind the table had no idea what they were selling. They weren't sure what was organic and what wasn't. They couldn't tell me what to do with a cipollini onion (one of them couldn't even pronounce it). They did have some local items, herbs especially and at a good price. Other the other fruit and vegetables stands were the usual warehouse boxed produce types. Nothing special. There were a couple of stalls selling baked goods. The cookies were awesome and the brownies from Baked were pretty good. Cynical as I am I hope the market does well. Now if it could get the guys from Redland ORganics to supply produce then I'd be impressed.

                                                                                                            1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                              The guys from Redland Organics are supplying produce to the South Florida Farmers Market in Pinecrest. It's far for me to visit often but it may be worth a trip.

                                                                                                              So far, there seems to be no good market to go to here, so might as well look at the bright side of the little we have.

                                                                                                              1. re: miachef

                                                                                                                The Pinecrest market is on Saturday. I was just thinking if Saturday was open on their calendar they could come to the UE side.

                                                                                                                1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                  I thought it was on Sundays; it started yesterday. Shall we start a petition? ;)

                                                                                                                  This from the Bee Heaven farm website:

                                                                                                                  "We also sell at our local Farmers Market. Come see us every Sunday 8am-1pm January through March at the South Florida Farmers Market in Pinecrest. The market is sponsored by Gardner's Markets and is located at their Pinecrest store off US1 & SW 124th Street."

                                                                                                                  1. re: miachef

                                                                                                                    My goof, Pinecrest market is Sundays. Same logic though. If the Upper Eastside one is Saturdays so I figured if the Sunday slot was full, they'd have Saturday's open. Do you know if the same company that puts on the UES one does the Pinecrest one as well? I have a feeling not and that's why we don't see Redland/Bee Haven Farms there.

                                                                                                                    1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                      I don't think it's the same people but it'd be great if they could bring them and it would work out for their schedule. It must be difficult to attract vendors because every market around here seems to have the same people. Which reminds me, for anyone interested, Casa Toscana also had a stand at the Upper East Side market.

                                                                                                          2. The reason for the lousy markets is that many of the good farmers refuse to work with the company that mysteriously gets all the contracts to run the markets.

                                                                                                            The only two that I know of n south florida NOT run by that company are the market in the grove.. and the organic market in hollywood..

                                                                                                            There are fruit and vegetable dealers (not organic) at the Flager dog track weekend fleamarket.. and at the Fleamarket in cutler ridge.. oh and at the swap shop in lauderdale.

                                                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: karmalaw

                                                                                                              Great to know that the company that the municipalities are hiring to run the farmers' markets doesn't have good relationships with the farmers. Classic Miami.

                                                                                                              1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                                exactly.

                                                                                                                classic south florida..it's not just miami.

                                                                                                                1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                                  The Market Company had a booth at the market. Maybe some inquisitive person can investigate? I'll take the challenge.

                                                                                                                  1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                    been there -- done that (on behalf of the farmers). I won't discuss it further on the boards.

                                                                                                                    1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                      I spoke to one of the farms and they gave me two reasons why they wouldn't come to other markets: 1) They don't have the manpower to come out on Saturday since they're picking and packing produce for the Sunday market; and 2) they don't like working with the company like Karmalaw mentioned.

                                                                                                                      On another note, Paradise Farms is coming out to the Gables farmers market.

                                                                                                                      1. re: miachef

                                                                                                                        I figured they'd be busy with the Sunday market, plus they've got CSA delivery on Saturday, right? What's pathetic is they don't like working with the company that seems to have a farmers market monopoly here. What farmers does this company actually have relationships with? Went to the UES market this Saturday and the Market Company table had the same incompetent employees that were clueless as to what was local and/or organic. They're pathetic. On the one hand I want to support this endeavor since it'll ultimately help out the neighborhood. But this company's offerings are so poor and it seems their relationships with growers so bad that I don't want to support them. Quite a dilemman.

                                                                                                                        BTW, saw Paradise Farms at Coral Gables market. Their prices were outrageous! Almost everything was sold by the ounce and it seemed more like garnish vs. salad greens. Glad they went out. One of the employees was saying that the owner was totally against going but they convinced her. Nice to see Gabrielle likes to share her bounty with the public vs. just restaurants.

                                                                                                                        1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                          Well, I wouldn't necessarily blame the farmers. The fees and terms apparently are steep. I honestly think we're making progress. Paradise Farms coming out is great. Their produce is pricey, yes, but they're out here. Slowly and hopefully with support the markets around here will improve. Though the monopoly that this company seems to have seems to be a problem.

                                                                                                                2. The Downtown Fort Pierce Farmers' Market is a wonderful farmers' market. It features many local farmers including organics, hydroponics, herbs, tropical plants, bee keepers, jams & jellies, local fresh & frozen seafood, local bakeries and much more. There is live music every Saturday morning and lots of delicious food and beverage vendors. There is also a couple of produce vendors who are not local that fill in with items not available locally, but rather trucked from other areas.

                                                                                                                  This farmers' market is often misassociated with the Ft. Pierce Jazz Society's Arts & Crafts Market which operates on the grassy area across the street & just west of the farmers' market. While these markets compliment each other, they are two seperate ententies. The Downtown Fort Pierce Farmers' Market only permits agriculture related items plus value-added food and beverage vendors. No jewerly, clothes, paintings, etc.

                                                                                                                  Let's clear up a misconception here. If you want farmers' markets (green markets) or flea markets pick wisely, as many areas are opening flea markets and misnaming them as "green markets" or "farmers' markets" and allowing any vendors available to fill the space, including jewerly, clothing, etc. that are not even locally made items. Which is fine, as long as they call it by what it is. Don't call it a farmers' market or green market if that is not what is offered. The public expects to find farmers, not wind chimes, at a farmers' market.

                                                                                                                  Understand one thing...we are loosing our agriculture land to builders in Florida and our ability to grow our own food. We MUST hold on to and utilize the ag land in order to survive long term.

                                                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: Bobbi Spencer

                                                                                                                    Thank you for noticing Bobbi. Unfortunately the majority of new housing developments are planted in the fields where our agricultural crops once flourished. Florida still grows the majority of the winter's vegetable crop grown in the US. People do not realize that farming is a business. There is a potential for locally grown produce, but it has to be marketed properly by people who care about quality.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Denmark

                                                                                                                      Yes and also Bought locally by people who care about quality. Unfortunately most people are either too "busy" or don't understand/appreciate the difference same day picked corn or real vine ripened tomatoes can make in their meals.

                                                                                                                      Big Ag is corporately owned and is subject to bottom line results not necessarily taste results for the most part IMO.

                                                                                                                      1. re: eatnbmerry

                                                                                                                        I've met an inordinate amount of the "don't understand/appreciate..." people here. I remember the commotion in my office when someone discovered the microwaveable potato. A company took a plain potato, wrapped it in plastic, added microwave instructions and marketed it as a microwave potato. The reaction from everyone was as if someone had just discovered what had been missing in Al Capone's vault. And from listening to people rave about the "maybe organic, maybe local, maybe not, who cares" produce they're buying at a farmers market irks the heck out of me. Many times it's the same produce you can get at Publix or Wild Oats but the only difference is you're buying it outside under a tent! Ugh.

                                                                                                                        1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                          When I want to buy the same produce as Publix or wild oats at a great price, I go to the guy selling from his truck (every afternoon M-Sat) at NW 29th St and NW 1st Avenue. I spend about 1/3 of what I would spend at stores, have a nice visit (he and his wife are super pleasant people), and leave with a smile.

                                                                                                                          When I want organic I head to the organic market in the grove on Saturdays.

                                                                                                                          1. re: karmalaw

                                                                                                                            All the produce sold by the CSA folks is local and organic. In order to keep farms alive, local, and organic, people must keep these alive and healthy. This comes at a price. If we wish only for cheap food, it must come from agrobusiness and exports where there are no labor laws (Nafta/Cafta stuff) I joined and am thrilled.

                                                                                                                          2. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                            That's one of the things I miss the most about California, the variety and freshness of the produce/fruit, even at a Pavilions say. The Bay Area (Alice and Berkeley coop mentality hard to find anywhere for sure) more so than SoCal but anything better than here.

                                                                                                                            I myself head south into the Redlands/Homstead area if for nothing else to smell the air and feel the land. The Bargain Town Flea market off of US 1 and 240 something is also an option on weekends. It has a bunch of produce booths but the quality can be hit or miss although the prices are usually a hit. I honestly haven't gone in awhile and suspect that some of the vendors may be getting "second picks" from local farms and reselling. Thats also a potential problem with some of those back of the truck guys too. Of course Knaus (forget the strawberries who can resist the Cinnamon Rolls) and Burr's have their specialties and even the Everglades Natl Park's unoffical entrance, Roberts is Here, has a nice variety although a lot is not as local as you would like.

                                                                                                                            I also agree with you that the Gardners market is the best one I've seen around. BTW, I think it is on this Sunday through April.

                                                                                                                            Karma's idea is good and I suspect his truckie may be getting from the main Miami produce/fruit distribution center nearby. Taiga probably has the best idea if you want to go local organic but I assume it can get comparatively expensive?

                                                                                                                            But like you say L2M, you get what you pay for and in this case lets also add, what you are willing to hound out!

                                                                                                                            1. re: eatnbmerry

                                                                                                                              Yes, Miami Joe (as he's known) purchases daily from the main distribution center. I've been buying from him for years. Plus, I really like the idea of supporting non-corporate vendors.

                                                                                                                              1. re: karmalaw

                                                                                                                                Love the idea and how can you not like the name as well !

                                                                                                                    2. I was really hoping one of you guys would mention a good Farmers Market. I am kind of surprised there is none in Davie. Whenever I travel through Davie, I see a bunch of local farms. I used to go pick strawberries as a kid at Batton Farms (Davie road south of Griffen). I also used to get really good fresh milkshakes there and fudge. They always had pretty good produce too, very fresh looking.

                                                                                                                      10 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: CmdrTulkas

                                                                                                                        Wow, Battens Strawberry Farm in Davie. We used to go in high school and gorge ourselves on "jam berries" (overripe strawberries that were a little too far gone to be presentable but good for making jams - or for stuffing your face with over lunch hour). There's a citysearch entry and a couple comments in the past year so it must still be around.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                                          I thought the Upper East Side Green Market was great. I was there Saturday. The chefs were there. The people were there, and there was some decent produce. There was a guy selling stone crab claws for $8/lb. You can get a Kundalini massage or get your spine checked. Some espresso and a creme brulee. I thought everyone was friendly, and, unlike others have posted, pretty open and honest about where their stuff came from. It's not the great urban farmers market, there are no farmers here at all. But if you're just buying from someone who gets their produce from a wholesaler anyway, it'll do for a nice neighborhood gathering place. Great prepared foods, breads, cheeses, and the like. Additionally, I don't see what the CSA has to do with anything. If the farms want to be here, they can be here, just like everyone else. Do you think the Chefs who were there don't work seven days a week? And although I belong to the CSA, I have found it inconvenient and expensive. But that's just my personal take. I also think it's silly to slam the organizer with anonymous allegations. One step at a time, try some patience. It was just their third market of the year, and people voted with their presence.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Miami Danny

                                                                                                                            MD - without a doubt, one of the real joys of the Upper Eastside Area in general is how friendly and attitude-free just about everyone you meet is.

                                                                                                                            But was there actually anything green at the "Green Market" other than your aura after your kundalini massage? Shouldn't there be? Why does it seem so hard for anyone to put together a farmer's market in this town that actually involves - you know - farmers? I realize it's must seem geographically and financially undesirable for these folks to haul their wares out to Biscayne, etc., but it's just so baffling to me why this works in other cities but can't seem to happen here. The fact that people are, as you say, voting with their presence tells me there is in fact a market (pun unintended) for it.

                                                                                                                            BTW, I'm a pretty brave eater, but I'd be afraid to buy stone crab claws for $8/lb. I don't go bargain hunting with raw fish and shellfish.

                                                                                                                            1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                                              According to Fran Rollason, the community activist, " I have heard from 2 sources that purchased fish - grouper and stone crab that the price was very good and the product was fabulous." Maybe next week?

                                                                                                                              1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                                                                                When buying seafood from any source one needs to feel, smell, and visually inspect. I've purchased great, fresh, fish, shell fish at very cheap prices from local fishermen. One needs to know what to look for in fresh seafood. No need to be afraid.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Lobsterguy

                                                                                                                                  I used to think this was true, but have been told that there are chemicals that can alter look and smell? Please tell me if this is true.

                                                                                                                                  Thanks.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: eatnbmerry

                                                                                                                                    I buy most of my fresh seafood (at great prices) at the casablanca fish market on the Miami River.. they are a couple of doors to the right of Garcia's (as you are facing it) and are open 7 days a week.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: karmalaw

                                                                                                                                      Thanks, I know the place and while it seems to be consistently cheaper than Garcia's I'm not so sure its necessarily better. I guess it depends on the day and what their respective boats have brought in. BTW, I also remember Michy buying there on a TV show she was featured.

                                                                                                                                      Because of convenience more than anything else, during the week I tend to buy mostly at Captain's Tavern market in Pinecrest. Many people don't realize that apart from the institution that is the restaurant, the market exist on the other side. On weekends is when I have a chance to scoot around early on and do often head towards the river.

                                                                                                                                      But you would think that living here we be swimming in great fresh fish markets but it isn't the the case from my experience. And I tend to agree with Frod, buying shellfish on the cheap reminds me of "do you wanna buy a bridge" not too mention l2m's "you get what you pay for".

                                                                                                                                      1. re: eatnbmerry

                                                                                                                                        I'm just curious but is anyone able to compare Captain Tavern, Casablanca, and Garcia's to Omar Seafood at 2111 NW 10th Ave
                                                                                                                                        Miami, FL 33127? I know La Camaronera also has a fish market, but it's so tiny that I probably would not consider it as one on an everyday basis.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: mialebven

                                                                                                                                          Sorry Mia not familiar with Omar's.

                                                                                                                                          As to the others, I would say that Captain's fish selection is always very fresh, clams and oysters are mainly from Mass and come in on Mon and Thurs I think, live Maine lobster and the stone crabs are competively priced as well. They also smoke their own salmon (nice and moist), kingfish and sell some items from the restaurant like great crab cakes and stuffed Florida lobster tails.

                                                                                                                                          Garcia's is "less" of a fish market than the other two I would say, but I have found their stone crab claws to be excellent although a few bucks more per lb than Casablanca and about equal to Captain's.

                                                                                                                                          Casablanca in a sense has the most potential to find a "deal". The fish is literally laid out in front of you in various gigantic buckets filled with ice. You basically choose the one you like and they will fillet (if you want), debone, weigh, pack for you. This method is great if you know what you're doing but is not for everyone. There is an art to picking fresh seafood and it does take a little practice. The old clear eye test is only one and not always infallible by any means. I would say their prices tend to be lower than other two but as far as the claws I have had more misses than with the other two also. If you do want to try Casablanca I suggest getting there very early (10am is too late).

                                                                                                                                          Hope this helps a little and would like to hear about Omar's some more too.

                                                                                                                        2. The city of Parkland now has a Green Market once a month, and the City of Coral Springs is starting theirs in February...check out the website for each city for more info...

                                                                                                                          www.coralsprings.org
                                                                                                                          www.cityofparkland.org

                                                                                                                          1. The Winter Park Farmers Market Rocks! I used to go there every Saturday when I lived in Winter Park. Now I live in Titusville and there is a group who is doing a farmer's market here on Fridays (www.brevardfarmersmarkets.com). I haven't been yet, I just found out about it today in the paper. The link for the winter park Farmer's Market is http://www.ci.winter-park.fl.us/2005/...
                                                                                                                            Yes it is just the City's Website. But so far that is my favorite market. Also, I agree that the Downtown Orlando's Market just isn't up to snuff--it doesn't focus on a key aspect: Farmers.

                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                            1. re: bonggren

                                                                                                                              Yes I agree Winter Park Saturday Farmers Market is the best I have encountered in Florida Thus far.

                                                                                                                              A few of my favorite vendors

                                                                                                                              Artisian Bread Guy - He bakes the bread half way, you finish it up at home. Delicious

                                                                                                                              Several Stands with Local Honey

                                                                                                                              Artisian Cheese Couple - Awesome, I just wish they sold more of a variety of cheeses. The bleu cheese is amazing.

                                                                                                                              The lady that sells pickled items, corn relish, and pie fillings. Always a hit

                                                                                                                              Fresh Eggs and grass feed meats lady

                                                                                                                              Pesto Lady

                                                                                                                              Pay attention to the fruit and veggies stands most are local but I've heard some are not.

                                                                                                                              Pappardelle's pasta

                                                                                                                              Winter Park Fish Company - We had some amazing just caught this morning sea bass from there.

                                                                                                                              Flowers and Plants food stands and smoothies. Dog friendly and fun.

                                                                                                                              -----
                                                                                                                              The Fish Company
                                                                                                                              725 Atlantic Blvd Ste 12, Atlantic Beach, FL 32233

                                                                                                                            2. The Farmer's Market in downtown Fort Pierce (by the marina) on Saturday mornings is rather good. Quality organic veggies/fruits. Nice scene in the morning. Stop off at the Captain's Galley beforehand for breakfast (eggs bene!)

                                                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                                                              1. re: firelight1016

                                                                                                                                Miami Mayor Manny Diaz, as well as City of Miami Commissioners Marc Sarnoff and Joe Sanchez showed their commitment to the Upper Eastside Green Market by shopping there yesterday (Kris Wessel and family bicycled (!) down Biscayne Boulevard to the market), and I was blown away by newcomer World Flavour, purveyors of handcrafted teas and spices (they also had fresh, whole nutmeg and cardamom pods), especially their Valentina, which is China Black Tea, with pink sugar hearts, and makes a great Valentine's Day gift. They told me they would be at the Lincoln Road market today (Sunday), for you late shoppers. More photos of produce and people at www.dailycocaine.blogspot.com including the infamous and delicious $8/lb Stone Crab Claws

                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                1. re: Miami Danny

                                                                                                                                  Sounds like it's the same two brothers who go to the Coral Gables Farmers Market because I saw the tea there. It's so pretty. I've bought a mix called exotic (I think) - hibiscus flower, mango and papaya. It smells delicious and yields this bright ruby red tea.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: miachef

                                                                                                                                    I believe it's the same guys too. There had a booth at the CG market on Saturday as well.

                                                                                                                                  2. re: Miami Danny

                                                                                                                                    I'm pleased to pass along the update that the Upper Eastside Green Market has been extended through May 3rd. See you tomorrow...

                                                                                                                                  1. Has anyone been to the Wilton Manors farmers market? I live close by, and didn't even realize they had one until I looked on the dept of agriculture website.

                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: butrfli1227

                                                                                                                                      Does anyone know what happened to the vendors after the farmer's market/flea market on 441 near Atlantic in Margate (I think they they were associated somehow with the Swap Shop) closed down? Are those venders in any other farmer's markets? There was a fantastic stand with a huge variety of asian vegetables and another stand with a huge selection of herbs. I miss that market!

                                                                                                                                      1. re: LBTS Steve

                                                                                                                                        It closed? Damn! We were going to go this weekend but opted out because walking around the stalls in 95 degree heat didn't seem like a good idea.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: lax2mia

                                                                                                                                          I had to laugh because i hadnt been on CH in a while and yours was the first post i saw and was like -did i post this?? -the reason i am back in is i am looking for a gd fish market anywhere in the vicinity of southbeach -i just wandered for 3 hours after refusing to buy my fish at costco,then went to whole foods, which was just as embarrassing -all i am looking for was whole squid-whole foods had calamari "steaks" whatever they are - but yes from what i have seen the produce and fish down here are lacking to say the least which is shocking cause it seems like everything grows well down here and we are surrounded by water -i guess its just the market doesnt support it -back to ny i go after trying to make it work for 2.5 years

                                                                                                                                          1. re: tgreene73

                                                                                                                                            Try Garcia's or Casablanca both on mainland side along the Miami River (Casablanca is just down the street). For whole squid you might also try Laurenzo's Market. I make this rec with some hesitation: I haven't been for quite some time, and the quality can be hit or miss.

                                                                                                                                            -----
                                                                                                                                            Garcia Seafood Grille & Fish
                                                                                                                                            398 NW North River Dr, Miami, FL 33128

                                                                                                                                            Laurenzo's Italian Specialty
                                                                                                                                            16385 W Dixie Hwy North, Miami Beach, FL

                                                                                                                                    2. To all who long for a local farmer,

                                                                                                                                      My ALL organic veggies: tomatoes (4 varieties including yellow sunburst), mini yellow, orange and red peppers, organic red & green bell peppers, serrano and habanero chili peppers, thyme and cilantro are just now sprouting and I should selling my very fresh produce shortly.

                                                                                                                                      Don't know if I'll have my own stand, but my produce is incredibly sweet and deelish! When I want to rid pests or aphids, I use a home recipe from garlic & cayenne. I could safely say that in a month (December, 2008) my veggies will be pumping, and I'm adding other staples to the ground shortly.

                                                                                                                                      I hope to contribute the freshest organic, locally grown produce on the southeast coast!

                                                                                                                                      Kudos to all the veggie lovers and farmers,
                                                                                                                                      Debbie Coogan
                                                                                                                                      Hollywood, FL

                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                      1. re: Guanaboina

                                                                                                                                        When they're ready, keep us updated on the when and where, I think you'll find some eager customers here.

                                                                                                                                      2. I just added a list of Organic Farmers in Miami/Hollywood area in Chow List. It is frustrating here, I was very spoiled on fresh markets where I grew up in Hong Kong. You could smell each vegetable's distinctive aroma, it was so fresh. I really miss that.

                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                        1. re: Eleanor Hoh

                                                                                                                                          The only "fresh" produce in the broward area seems to be Josh's on the beach. Two weeks ago, I went to Josh's and it was closed - one of only two weekends of the year. So, in search of fresh produce< I travelled to Batton Farms out west - it was permanently closed. I traveled the Davie corridor, which used to have fresh produce for sale from a number of roadside small farms, and still no fresh lettuce. I eventually ended up at Publix, defeated. I can't believe that void exists in such a huge market!

                                                                                                                                        2. There is a wonderful farmer's market in Winter Park, Florida. It's every saturday from 7am til 1pm. They have a beekeeper there with wonderful honey. You can sample their organically produced local, raw, unfiltered honey as well as the many other honey's that they carry. It's like going to a wine tasting! Check out Winter Park Honey at the Winter Park Farmer's Market...or go online to WinterParkHoney.com.

                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                          1. re: cycle_pn

                                                                                                                                            My wife heard about this market and we headed over there this past weekend (were in town for the holidays). In comparison to S. Florida farmer's markets, I was fairly impressed with the space, Visited the honey guy, who was way too happy to indulge any question into informative answers about anything and everything honey related. he gave me a few samples and had us try some honeycomb with Winter Park Blue cheese, which was also great.

                                                                                                                                            People sold, plants, herbs, "gelato" (very tasty but not very creamy, tried corn and guayaba y queso), a french bakery who had some very good pastries, a cheese section who did not have a very interesting assortment, but some good stuff nonetheless, someone selling caramel apples (very good), kettle corn, orange and tangerine juices (ok, a little acid for me), pet toys, produce, oils and vinegars, homemade pastas (definitely worth noting and they sell online, I will post the website when I find it), and quite a few other vendors. Overall, the place was well organized and packed quite a few stalls into a decent sized space. I would be curious to visit it with more time again in the future.

                                                                                                                                          2. West Palm Beach Greenmarket, at the courthouse, is probably the best greenmarket in South Florida. Swank Farms sells there, as does the heirloom tomato guy from Loxahatchee, a woman who sells organic Asian greens, and a wonderful cheese man, fresh pastas, bakeries, among many others, including a fully organic produce stand with everything from potatoes to greens and squashes. Our local clam farmer used to come down as well, but I haven't seen him there this year. The market's a gem, but always VERY crowded. Get there early for best produce.

                                                                                                                                            1. Not exactly a farmer's market, but, I've always had great luck at the Mustang Flea Market in Pinellas Park. There are usually about 1 or 2 rows of produce right by the entrance. Lots of really good tropical and Asian produce.

                                                                                                                                              It's also worth checking out Sweetwater's Sunday market. It's a CSA that sells some of their excess produce, along with some stuff from outside vendors.

                                                                                                                                              I've just joined a new CSA, Gateway Organic Farm, in Clearwater. So far, the size of the shares is small, and the quality is so-so, but, I like supporting an organic farm that is 15 miles from my home.

                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: MsRetro

                                                                                                                                                Mustang is by far the best farmer's market in Florida. As MsRetro said, Asian and tropical along with some good mexican staples. You'll also find them selling some more interesting cuts of meat (usually pork), eggs (including duck) and recently I've seen the first vendor near the fence selling lots of live snails of various sizes.

                                                                                                                                                Right across from them you'll also find a large truck with produce with an ongoing special of 3 items (usually quart containers) for $5.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: nerditry

                                                                                                                                                  MUSTANG is fantastic! I go almost every weekend and load up with produce for the week. There are aisles of vendors selling all sorts of herbs, veggies, fruit, etc.
                                                                                                                                                  Last weekend I bought sugar snap peas for $1.00 per pound! Mushrooms were $1.50lb, and I picked up an entire flat of strawberries for $5.00!
                                                                                                                                                  There is also a number of fish vendors, I have my favorite. They keep the fish on ice and it's all surprisingly fresh. I picked up beautiful spanish mackerel for $2.50 lb. A whole dorado was $10. Gulf shrimp - $32 for a 5.5lb bag.
                                                                                                                                                  I could go on.....

                                                                                                                                              2. Whenever we make a trip to Everglades National Park we always include a stop at Robert is Here. It's a wonderful fruit stand plus. A bit out of the way,(Homestead--extreme Miami-Dade County) but worth checking out. Great fruit, wonderful vibe. Being there always make me miss the Florida of my youth.

                                                                                                                                                19200 SW 344th Street. Homestead, FL 33034
                                                                                                                                                http://www.robertishere.com/

                                                                                                                                                -----
                                                                                                                                                Robert is Here
                                                                                                                                                19200 SW 344th Street, Homestead, FL

                                                                                                                                                1. On the other side of the state. Fort Myers, downtown, Thursdays 7-1, under the Caloosahatchee Bridge. One organic farmer, one beach fish company, several resellers. All in all, the freshness rivals the supermarkets in the area. Jeff the organic dude (can't miss, looks like ZZtop drummer) has all kinds of lettuces, herbs, root veggies, sometimes strawberries, squashes and other seasonal items. Has farm near Lake Okeechobee. He sells out fast, so I'd advise and early trip.

                                                                                                                                                  1. there's a more perminant farmers market in oakland park. Lucky Farmer Market on Prospect and Andrews. Their prices are really good. I usually get tomatoes and bananas. orange peppes, avocados...but they have different things all the time.

                                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: PathOfPetals

                                                                                                                                                      I shop at Lucky Farmers market all the time. Prices are good, selection is ok. The owner is a very nice Mexican family, They have a good carneceria inside as well. On weekends you can get fresh tamales if you ask.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: dharma

                                                                                                                                                        Lucky sounds great. I will make it a point to make it there this weekend. Thanks for posting it!

                                                                                                                                                    2. If it's not too late to weigh in on one more Farmers Market, may I suggest the Fernandina Beach Market held every Saturday morning until 1 PM on Amelia Island? It's clear at the other end of the state, I know, but it's an amazing market considering the small, quaint town that supports it. Unlike many Florida markets, it's year round, and a true GREEN market --- no crafts or kitch. Everything is either edible or can be grown (tons of hourse plants, orchids, and flowering landscape materials). As with all markets, and the time of year, the 20-25 vendors change, but there's everything from organic pork products to artisanal cheeses, breads, etc., all made by the 'farmers' selling them. And talk a about ethnic, on a recent Saturday, I found the crab cake guy AND a local houseplant/succulent grower were both Dutch, the eggroll lady was Vietnamese, and the unbelievable homemade tamales were hand made by a pair of sisters from where else---- Mexico. Several stands were selling local organic produce as well. In short, a market well worth the stop, right down town, just 10 miles off of I-95.

                                                                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: almostgeorgia

                                                                                                                                                        Well I didn't see Sarasota mentioned. It isn't huge. 2 large growers but tons of produce all fresh, one on each end 2 small blocks, we do have a massuse for free, we do have a flower vendor who does a great business. We have 2 or three fresh organics a fresh cheese vendor, several organic vendors, some crafts, home made bread, home made candles and some local cermaic tiles painted with the local scenes. Outside, great place. We do have a fresh coffee stand. Wonderful coffee for 1.00, also a breakfast stand. But I've been to many markets and I love it. I can't afford organic, too pricey for me but I did get all fresh produce. Ours represent our town which I love. It still has great veggies and I don't miss a Saturday! I got some awesome small eggplants, FL sweet onions, red, orange, yellow and green peppers, tons of tomatoes, zuchinni and summer squash, lots of mushrooms, scallions, brussels sprouts, romaine, watermelon (which you can taste) blood oranges, mangos, green beans and fresh bread and great bread cheese which is awesome for a desert. Fresh arugula, cilantro (mine was just replanted) and fresh flowers. All in one stop. A gorgeous walk downtown, everyone brings their dogs and walks around. It is just relaxing and fun. Drinks coffee, listens to some folk music, walks around and visits. Parking isn't easy but not hard, most people come and just enjoy the morning. I go for a walk on the beach after which is perfect. Every Sat from 7-12. I try to go early for easy parking and the fresh pics.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                                                                          as I failed to realize. Farmer's Market scene has come to an end this season. I was hoping to stop by the Coral Gables edition, CLOSED. Googled Pinecrest, ended in March so I headed to Whole Foods in South Miami and was gouged from the slim pickings of their "bridge and tunnel" selection. Today, I dared venture to the Swap Shop and its swine flu inducing appearance of row after row of the SAME vegetables. I was in Cleveland, OH last weekend and came upon the Westside Market in proximity to downtown Cleveland. That is the new level by which I judge an outdoor market. We can only aspire to what I witnessed last weekend.

                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jmdhsmiami

                                                                                                                                                            I agree, SRQ much smaller and I would love to add some other vendors. One being a Italian vendor or Pasta vendor that would offer sauces and fresh pastas. We can't compete with something like your pics. But I still find great fresh produce which is what I am looking for. I would love to have a market like that. But I'm not being realistic. I am thankful for having it year round however. Now it is only Saturday, but people make it a sat morning ritual. It becomes fun to run into other friends every sat am.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jmdhsmiami

                                                                                                                                                              I left Cleveland about six years ago after living there for twelve years, and I still miss the West Side Market. For four years, I lived juuust across the Carnegie Bridge from the Market, and for about a year, I lived at W. 25th Street and Carroll Avenue, right where the market is. I could throw rocks from my front door and hit vendors.

                                                                                                                                                              Not that I would do that.

                                                                                                                                                              Obviously, the West Side Market is not selling all locally farmed produce, but the variety, price, and freshness are simply amazing. In addition to all the produce, there's an enormous indoor meat, bread, and seafood market with a nice little cafe. I'm two years into living in Miami, now, and I have yet to find anything that even comes close. Some of the "farmers markets" around here are complete scams, selling nothing but incense and maybe a few flower bouquets. It's very frustrating. I grew up in South Florida, and I remember there being a lot more actual farmers and produce at the farmers markets when I was a kid.

                                                                                                                                                              To anyone in the Miami (well, really Broward) area, I cannot recommend Penn-Dutch (http://www.penn-dutch.com/ ) highly enough. Except for things like cat litter boxes and toothpaste, I do all of my shopping at Penn-Dutch. Penn-Dutch has BY FAR the best overall selection of produce, meats, deli items, etc, of any local grocery I have found. I get boneless, skinless chicken breasts for $1.29-$1.49/lb, excellent sirloin custom-cut at the meat counter for $4.99/lb, sausage and hot-dogs made right there at the facility for a few bucks per package, and so on. For produce, you often see things like corn at five ears for a dollar, organic apples at $.89/lb, peaches at $.89-$.99/lb, lemons at four for a dollar, oranges and grapefruit at great prices, plus lots and lots of beans, peppers, and other staples.

                                                                                                                                                              Those pictures of the West Side Market have me bummed out. I really miss having easy access to that place.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: TheThirdMarketeer

                                                                                                                                                                I was a Clevelander for 6 nearly 6 years and am back to my New England roots. I miss Cleveland a lot and the West Side Market was a staple. During the summer, one can find locally-picked produce, as nearby pick-your own markets, like Fitch Farm, abound. Some of the produce does, in fact, show up at the WSM. I lived right by University Circle. I think that I might just go back there at some point. There is a new dedicated bus lane that runs from Tower City to University Circle (RTA-based). Nearby the WSM, there is also a fantastic pastry shop. You just can't find that (and places like Lucy's Sweet Surrender with cherry strudels over this way.) Oh, and one must be sure to try Aladdin's. I am still trying to get them to come to New England. The Mediterranean Imports store at the WSM has nearly every kind of cheese or olive you would want (to try). Is there another thread dedicated to the WSM???

                                                                                                                                                        2. yes, it is still awful..but it is Titusville

                                                                                                                                                          1. Best I have seen is the farmer's market at the Swap Shop in Broward. You can get cheap almost-rotten tomatoes and you can also get some of the freshest veggies around- and giant carrots too.

                                                                                                                                                            Of course grab a taco while you're there, and a giant Corona Familiar if you plan to stay and listen to the battling boom boxes.

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                                                                                                                                                            1. re: purpledude

                                                                                                                                                              DIdn't it move? I used to go when it was near Tamarac. Can you post where it is now? Txs.

                                                                                                                                                            2. Well, I'll be danged.

                                                                                                                                                              I read about a new farm in Oak Hill that sells at the New Smyrna Beach farmers' market (Green Flamingo Farms), so I decided to give the market another try. What a change in the last year! Plentiful locally grown pesticide-free vegetables from several farmers, local grass-fed beef, local seafood from the Oak Hill co-op, enough producers with local eggs that you don't have to get there before 7:45 to get any. Plus an organic baker and the usual collection of crafts and processed foods. Saturday mornings on Canal St. Yeah!

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                                                                                                                                                              1. re: fishandveggiesplease

                                                                                                                                                                A few thoughts:

                                                                                                                                                                1.Cape Coral has a good on on Saturdays. It does have lots of non-farmer vendors but they have good products. Try the authentic Welch Pasties, especially the curry vegetable ones, they rock. Lots of produce vendors too.

                                                                                                                                                                2. For legal reasons this one is not called a farmer's market (Florida over regulation at it's best) but in the Gateway community of Fort Myers Trinity Lutheran church has started a weekly "Harvest Festival" which aims at helping local farmers stay sustainable. All local, all fresh Sat 9 am to 1 pm.

                                                                                                                                                                3. There is a you pick farm north of Fort Myers on 41. Can't remember the name, but you do not get fresher than produce you pull off the plant yourself.

                                                                                                                                                                4. On 17 between the Gulf coast and Orlando there are dozens of local run farm stands. Some look scary but all have good local produce. It may look more like Mexico than Florida but don't let that put you off, the people are friendly and the produce straight from the fields. That said there is a big flea market about an hour - hour and a half outside of Orlando on 17 that has a little taco stand on the weekends. Stop and taste what a taco is supposed to taste like, you will thank me. It looks run down but don't let that intimidate you.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rusyoak

                                                                                                                                                                  is that north on 17? i'll drive for DAYS for a good taco stand!!!!

                                                                                                                                                              2. Responding to "do all farmer's markets in Florida stink". My response is YES, if you are in Palm Beach County I haven't found one yet that applies to the term "farmer's market". I've tried Boca Raton, Delray Beach and yesterday West Palm Beach. While nicely set up it consisted of vendors selling the products they make. There isn't anything being sold that i can't either make myself or buy elsewhere where I wouldn't question the sanitary conditions of the kitchens utilized to make these products. What a disappointment! This is our first year wintering in Florida and I so looked forward to the markets. I had high hopes, but to no avail. I've read the posts about other markets, but let's face it, Fernandina Beach is a bit far from Palm Beach county.

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                                                                                                                                                                1. re: cmp2491

                                                                                                                                                                  My parents live in Delray Beach; there's no produce there besides The Boys' and Publix.

                                                                                                                                                                  Come to the west coast of FL. I moved to St Petersburg 1.5 yrs ago and I'm thrilled with the availability of fresh produce.
                                                                                                                                                                  Some places are small greengrocer types with produce that is much less than Publix or Sweetbay. I have 3 of those within10 minutes of where I am..(got bananas yesterday for 29cents/lb)

                                                                                                                                                                  Then of course there's the Mustang Flea market which on Saturday & Sundays is packed with vendors selling produce; hundreds of them. No they are not the farmers; they are the vendors who go directly to the farmers and bring the produce to the market. Know how when you go the the supermarket the produce is packed and you no longer can pick what you want?
                                                                                                                                                                  At this place you can pick which string bean, which mushroom, which pepper, etc. Save lots of money and get a good dose of local color.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mar1lyn27

                                                                                                                                                                    Sanibel has a wonderful farmer's market; veggies, fruit, fish, sauces, homemade yogurt and quark. best thing about sanibel except Ding Darling, if you ask me.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mar1lyn27

                                                                                                                                                                      there is farms and pick up fruits and veggie in Boyton Beach and it is 5 miles from delray and opened everyday even Sunday

                                                                                                                                                                      Bedner's Farm Fresh Market

                                                                                                                                                                      10066 Lee Road Boynton Beach, Florida 33473

                                                                                                                                                                      Phone: 561-733-5490

                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.bedners.com/index.html

                                                                                                                                                                      to find the markets go on www.LocalHarvest.com and put your zipcode

                                                                                                                                                                      In Boca Raton there is a night market called Ellenville's Moonlit Farmer's Market every thursday from 4pm to 8pm http://www.myfarmerjay.com/Farmer_Jay...

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: CASPERETTE

                                                                                                                                                                        I did go to Bedners this week. Nothing exciting there. Best veggies found so far are in The Boys on military near Atlantic.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: cmp2491

                                                                                                                                                                      I went to the Delray Beach market yesterday. The egg lady sells great eggs, yoghurt and honey but boy very expensive. There is a fish guy who is also pricey and a couple of produce vendors and bread. It's a nice market for about 5 minutes. The music is too loud, there are the usual crafts but overall it's nothing special.
                                                                                                                                                                      Boca has one in season in Royal Palm Plaza. I have only been there once but it's also not huge.

                                                                                                                                                                      I like supporting local produce farmers etc but Joseph's in Boca has the best selection of produce for a store.

                                                                                                                                                                    3. wish I could remember where I found it -- but I read an article a year or so ago that said that Florida doesn't allow *producers* to sell their goods to the public unless they jump through a bazillion hoops...thus Florida doesn't HAVE any producers' markets.

                                                                                                                                                                      The article was talking about some change in the regulations that would allow producers to sell what they grow...

                                                                                                                                                                      I'm a little fuzzy on the details, because it's been a while, but remember reading it and thinking "so THAT's why the markets in Florida are such crap!"

                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                        Probably the same reason why you can no longer buy fresh-squeezed orange juice at the many roadside stands whose billboards imply they'd be selling it.

                                                                                                                                                                      2. I was at the Winter Garden Farmers' Market this past weekend. I stopped by most of the tents and spoke with each vendor. Everyone I spoke with created thier products. There were homemade baked goods, hydroponic vegetables, free range eggs, honey from the beekeeper, 2 jewelry booths (but they were both handmade by the salesman)...and on and on. There were quite a few tents, lots of good homemade stuff. It was a nice day for me.

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                                                                                                                                                                        1. The best produce market in Fort Lauderdale is Lucky Market on Dixie Highway just south of Commercial Blvd. Its run by a Mexican family and they have all kinds of specialty vegetables as well as fruit and a small butcher shop. Prices are great, service is friendly, and you can buy bags of stuff for less than $20. Nothing is "organic" but then, nothing is organic anywhere else.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. Last Saturday, I tried the Lake Mary (Seminole County) Farmer's market - Quite small but very nice. Very good vegetables and some nice seafood. Also excellent Jamaican ginger beverages.
                                                                                                                                                                            Nice atmosphere and very convenient. On site good parking.,

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                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: reinaldok

                                                                                                                                                                              There are several farmer's markets in the Naples (Collier County) area. The ones that we frequent, at least during the cool part of the year we spend in Naples, are in Old Naples (behind Tommy Bahama's) on Sundays and in North Naples on Saturdays (it moves around, check local sources for current location). The North Naples one is bigger - and it has both organic and regular produce, fish, baked goods, flowers, plants, and a few crafts.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: TomOHaver

                                                                                                                                                                                The farmers market in Old Naples is on Saturdays,it starts at 7:30 and is year round. Its much bigger in the winter.If its not in the parking lot behind Tommy Bahama's its out on Third Street.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: newt

                                                                                                                                                                                    don't go yet. very little in the way of food, lots of flea market crap. We tried yesterday morning. Even more miserable was the Lions Farmers Market in Bonita Springs at the Promenade. If toilet paper cozies and ugly candles are your thing, you are set. They looked to have a good seafood purveyor, but she was out of everything by the time we arrived: 9:30 a.m.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Better to wait until 2nd week of November...produce should be available then. Hoping to find Rabbit Run Farms at one of them. I can drive there but would like to be able to select from a wider sourcing.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. The local farmer/growers should start showing up again in about 5-6 weeks. if there are veg sellers now at the various markets it is most likely not local, save for avacados, papaya and a few sheltered growers of greens.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. Try the west end of the Swap Shop! Fort Lauderdale. Ive found some great stuff there. Produce and flowers! Got long-stemmed roses for $1 a bud for a catered party! Whats not to love?!

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Ft Myers / Cape Coral area;

                                                                                                                                                                                    We have a few fairly good farmer's markets in this area. They get a lot better when season hits in November and the Florida produce starts coming in. The Cape Coral Farmer's market in Club Square off SE 47th St is the best in my opinion. It's only open in season (Nov-May) but it has tons of produce vendors, great prices (4 giant red peppers for $1!!!), yummy food vendors, music plus a whole bunch of other stuff (local honey - yum!). Year round there is a smaller farmer's market under the Caloosa Hatchee bridge on Thursdays.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: diane4zs

                                                                                                                                                                                      I agree! Cape Coral has an excellent farmers market Oct- May in Club Square. You do have to pay attention though, only some vendors sell local produce, but those that do, they're amazing! Great Sat morning ritual and a wonderful change from what Publix passes off as vegetables.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Not quite a farmers market, but, Dunedin folks can get local organic produce in season from the Dunedin Co-op. You order what you want on the webpage, then pick it up or have it delivered on Friday. http://dunedin.locallygrown.net/market/

                                                                                                                                                                                      The co-op is closed right now, but should open again as Florida vegetables start ripening.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. GREAT!!!! Wordens Farm is open for the season at the Sarasota Farmer's Market, It is good to have them back as ALL of the Organic produce is their own production. Also Brown's Groves will have more and more local veg/citrus, (their own) as the season progresses.

                                                                                                                                                                                        -----
                                                                                                                                                                                        Farmer's Market Restaurant
                                                                                                                                                                                        2736 Edison Ave, Fort Myers, FL 33916

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. I've found the "Farmer's Market", at the west end of the Swap Shop, in Ft. Lauderdale, to be fairly decent, with good prices on seasonal items. Not sure if they're organic, but, nobody seems to be asking around for that. Cant be beat for cut flowers.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. I agree with one of the replies below - Worden Farms is the way to go in SWFL, if you want Certified Organic Veggies, grown by a caring family of horticulturist that care of sustainable farming. Check there website for where they will be selling their beautiful produce in SWFL. OR if you want to be blown away weekly with a box of delicious veggies, sign up and become a part of there co-op! This is my second year and I absolutely LOVE IT!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. I felt the exact same way when i moved to Miami in 2009. Since then, I've met a lot of great people and a lot of great farmers, started the non-profit Urban Oasis Project (.org) to help people grow more food, and we now run a few markets in season, and have the Upper Eastside Farmers Market in Miami every Saturday year-round- featuring all-local produce. It's near impossible to get farmers to come to market, so I sell lots of stuff i grow and that is donated by numerous local home-gardeners, as well as buy a bunch of stuff directly from local farms- Bee Heaven, Worden Farm, Possum Trot, 3 sisters, Green Dean... (links to them all on our webpage). It's a big mix of organic whenever possible as well as some conventional produce. We also have a ot of the best local vendors, such as Proper Sausage, Copperpots, Nature Boyz, Hadaya Spice, Novae Gourmet and many others. Usually about 14 vendors.
                                                                                                                                                                                              And no sunglasses!
                                                                                                                                                                                              Check us out at NE 66th and Biscayne Blvd, entrance to Legion Park, Saturdays 9-2 PM.
                                                                                                                                                                                              SNAP (EBT) benefits accepted and doubled for the first $10 of fruit and veggies purchased!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: urbanoasis

                                                                                                                                                                                                Southwest Ranches in Pembroke Pines (Broward ) is awesome. YellowGreen in Hollywood is very very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Forget about St. Pete. There's nothing around here from the gulf to the bay side of St. Petersburg. The so called "farmer markets" are exactly what people here written about here. Sunglasses, broccoli and bananas from Chili (the stickers are still on them) so old you can tie them in knots, and a few odd crafts, and... that's it! Oh, there was one seafood vendor but it was at least 90 degrees and the fish was sitting on top of melting ice under the sun. It's pitiful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                There was supposed to be a good one on the bay side of St. Petersburg but my friend went there and the only thing she was able to find that looked any good were lemons. ::sigh:: This was a market that I'd heard amazing things about. Maybe it was off season?

                                                                                                                                                                                                Most people here go to a flea market to buy 10 pound bags of grapefruit, oranges, or Asian produce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                What makes it even worse is that I moved here from Asheville, NC where they had organic local produce markets 2 days a week. Wonderful lettuces from at least 4 different venders, tomatoes, potatoes, squash, zucchini, onions, basically any type of vegetable or fruit you could think of in season, plus home baked goods, seafood, (that came out of cooler chests filled with ice), fresh squeezed juices, homemade jams, & honey and brick fire oven toasted granola.

                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm wasting away ever since I moved to Florida.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: imsiegfried

                                                                                                                                                                                                  look up Sweetwater Farms (CSA) - and check with your local natural/organic food store to see if there are any co-op buying groups around.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  have a look at the classifieds-- the farms out east and south of Tampa frequently post ads when they open their fields for you-pick -- strawberries should be opening up shortly, but there's quite a bit around.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  It's there...but you have to look.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Have a wander round these discussions, too:
                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/715264
                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/783045

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have tried to find a local co-op buying group (I would love to be part of one) but so far there aren't any that cover my zip code. (I don't live in St. Pete, it's the closest city to me that most people know.) And the closest drive to co-op I've found is a two hour drive round trip. I just can't swing that due to health conditions. Kind of ironic when I think about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I haven't tried asking our local health food store, that's a good idea that I hadn't thought of.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    If that doesn't work I may decide to move in part to have access to better quality food. I've scoured the Net but so far no luck. I will look at the links you provided, thank you, Sunshine.