National Farmers Market Week was August 5-11, but why stop with just one week? August is a great time to promote and support farmers markets and show how valuable they can be to the community. In Hawai‘i, we know what it means to care for ‘ohana. By shopping at farmers markets, you give local families a better return on their produce and help sustain a kama‘aina, often family-run business that provides fresh food to the community.
The restaurant industry is the ideal place to start when it comes to supporting farmers and buying fresh. Here are just a few reasons.
- Freshness: The produce you get at a farmers market is the freshest available. Farm-fresh fruits and vegetables are packed with antioxidants and phytonutrients.
- Environmentally Friendly: The mass transport of food in the U.S. leaves a significant carbon footprint. By shopping at local markets you are cutting out various methods of transportation, and most farmers use growing methods that are safer for the planet and your family.
- Nourishment: Produce sold at farmers markets is generally minimally processed. Many farmers go to great lengths to ensure their product is the healthiest, best quality possible – without added processing.
- Variety: Farmers markets usually showcase fruits and vegetables you may not see in your regular grocery store.
- Assurance: When you buy your food directly from the source, there is no question about where it came from or how fresh it is. Farm-grown produce is delivered directly to the consumer.
- Learn: Many farmers will take the time to provide cooking recommendations and recipes you won’t get when buying off a shelf.
Even when buying fresh, it is important to follow food safety tips – wash your hands and thoroughly rinse the produce before use, choose milk and juice that has been pasteurized, and ensure raw meat and eggs are chilled.
We invite you to support farmers this month and all year round, and make the healthiest choices you can for your customers and families.
CLICK HERE for list of farmer’s market locations in Hawaii.
Brought to you by HMAA, where we’re passionate about your health. To find out more about HMAA’s health plans, visit hmaa.com or contact our Account Management Department. For information on our menu of wellness services, please contact Naomi Azama at (808) 791-7607 or firstname.lastname@example.org.