A reader emailed us and asked:
Should you buy only organic strawberries at farmers markets?
The main thought is to always buy organic when at the grocery store if you can afford it. As CNN reported back in March of 2017, Strawberries still remain as one of those foods that are heavily sprayed with pesticides. You can read the article full here.
But when it comes to vendors at farmers markets that is normally not the case as farmers generally use natural organic methods to care for their strawberry crops. Take for example Jollisant Farm in Plantersville, TX just outside of Houston. They pride themselves on a beautiful strawberry crop where folks can pick their own strawberries and enjoy the experience. Families can know that they are taking home fresh pesticide free strawberries.
So most likely produce at farmers market won’t be grown with pesticides as these are local gardening/farming fanatics (sort of) that believe in natural methods to grow fruits and vegetables.
So how can you know if pesticides have been used? Ask them! Another GREAT BENEFIT to shopping at farmers markets and why I prefer to do so. I know I’m getting something that was probably picked just yesterday or maybe the day before… FRESH!!!! And, I can hear straight from the farmer or their staff exactly what they used to keep bugs and rodents from affecting their crops. Now that is a piece of mind I’m worth paying extra for not to mention supporting my local community.
So when it comes to strawberries, you are probably pretty safe at farmers markets, but just ask them because they are on the “dirty dozen” list. And, if you live in the area be sure and ask the if they are a pick your own strawberry or vegetable farm and spend a day in the sunshine picking your food. It’s really a wonderful experience and a great way to educate your children. Nothing compares to seeing a zucchini, pumpkin, eggplant or strawberry on the vine as opposed to a picture in a book.
Get outdoors… leave the cell phone in the car (unless you want to take pictures) and support your local farmer today.