Nothing beats the bounty of fresh produce we can get in the Magnolia State, but shopping at a grocery store just isn’t the same as shaking the hand of a local farmer and hearing all about the most recent veggie haul.
Mississippi vendors have been busy harvesting their tastiest summer produce with many markets also offering young potted vegetable plants, baked and canned goods, local honey, and farm-fresh milk and eggs.
So, if you love Saturday morning markets with all the small-town, farm-fresh fanfare and specialty goods, here’s a list of a few must-visit market stops across the Magnolia State.
Hernando Farmers Market
At the Hernando Farmers Market, you’ll find an open-air market full of fresh local food, artistry, and agricultural traditions in one delicious spot — the historic Town Square. The market runs on Saturdays from April to October and offers a wide variety including fresh milk, preserved foods, pasture-raised eggs, and unique handmade crafts. And there are other Saturday draws, such as free sunrise yoga classes, live music, food demonstrations, knife sharpening, and other special events during market hours.
Ocean Springs Fresh Market
The Ocean Springs Fresh Market is set in the tranquil downtown and happens rain or shine, year-round every Saturday. The idea was based on the European food and plant markets with organizers adding local producers, plant and flower growers, and fruits and vegetables throughout each season. It is a place to take your family to meet old friends or make new ones.
Mississippi Farmers Market
Come home to homegrown at the Mississippi Farmers Market in Jackson. With everything from persimmons to peaches and bok choy to butter beans, this is the one place to go for the freshest fruits and vegetables that are grown all over the state. Growers from large and small farms alike use the Market to bring Mississippi’s richest bounties to your table. The year-round market is open each Saturday and just held the Summer Kickoff at the 18,000-square-foot downtown facility just off High Street. Other attractions include Mississippi craftsmen and artisans, cooking demonstrations from culinary schools and chefs from area restaurants, live entertainment, senior citizen and children’s activities, and seasonal events. Breakfast and lunch are served in the Farmers Market Cafe, located inside the Market.
Natchez Farmer’s Market
Seasonal vegetables and fruits come and go, but the Natchez Farmer’s Market is open every Saturday with veggies, preserves, jams, dairy products, and baked or handmade goods. The number one rule for the vendors is that the products can’t be bought from somewhere else and resold. Everything is either grown or made by the sellers so that it is handed straight from producer to consumer without a middleman taking any of the profit.
This is just a handful of farmers markets available throughout Mississippi and setting your table with a bounty of fresh dishes this summer really can be as easy as a trip to your city or town’s fresh farmers’ market.