There are four ways you can buy from a farmer, producer or market gardener:
- you can pick the produce at the farm (U-pick)
- you can buy the produce already picked at the farm (pre-picked or a custom order)
- you can become a member of a Community Shared Agriculture Farm
- you can buy produce at the farmer’s market
If you want to visit a farm and buy from the farm gate or pick it yourself, here is what you need to know.
How do I find farms I can buy from?
Visit the “Find a Farm” page to locate a nearby farm that has what you are looking for. You can buy fruits, vegetables, proteins, herbs, plants, meats, beverages and more directly from the farmer or producer on their farm or property.
Remember to always phone the farm before you plan to visit. Ask the farm what they have available to make sure what you want is in season and available for sale. If you don’t call, you may make the trip and end up disappointed.
Keep food safe
Bring a picnic cooler with ice packs to keep the meat or those berries and veggies food safe and still just-picked until you get home.
When you are on the farm, remember you are on someone else’s property – it is likely their home. Follow any written or verbal instructions you are given, and treat the farm like it was your own.
Dress the part.
It sounds obvious, but on a farm or at a u-pick, you are going to be outside, in the sun and the elements. Leave the open toe shoes or flip flops in the city, pack a hat and sunscreen, and bring a jacket along in case the weather changes.
Many farms may not have debit or credit machines, so bring enough cash to ensure you come home with everything you want.
Spread the love.
If you loved what you purchased on-farm and enjoyed the experience, tell the world. Share your experience on social media. Encourage your friends to go. Plan your return visit.