For many Americans, the start of summer means a visit to the farmers market.
And this year, farmers market shoppers can vote for their favorite local markets online during American Farmland Trust’s 4th annual America’s Favorite Farmers Markets™ contest, which began Friday, June 22.
The summer long competition aims to see which farmers markets can generate the most votes from their customers. The goal of the contest is to promote the role that farmers markets play in keeping family farmers on the land.
"Shopping at farmers markets is one my favorite parts of the summer," said American Farmland Trust President Jon Scholl. "In addition to the freshest local foods, farmers markets offer a great way for consumers to get to know the farmers who grow their food."
The 2012 America’s Favorite Farmers Markets™ contest has been expanded to include all 7,175 markets that are listed in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Farmers Market Directory - that includes Riverside Farmers Market at Roswell City Hall.
As part of the contest, a $1,000 Farmers Market Inspiration Award, sponsored by the Farmers Market Coalition, will be presented to a farmer showing the greatest dedication to his/her market.
"American Farmland Trust is delivering an extremely valuable service by going above and beyond to educate the public about the value and importance of preserving farmland," said Howard Herman, manager of the Falls Church Farmers Market.
According to the contest rules, people can vote for as many participating farmers markets as they choose, but can only vote for each market once. Voting runs through midnight on Monday, September 3, when one small, one medium, one mid-size and one large market will win the title of “America’s Favorite Farmers Market” for 2012. The winning markets will be featured in the media and will be honored at local celebrations organized by American Farmland Trust.
For more information about the 2012 America’s Favorite Farmers Markets contest or to vote, visit www.votemyfarmersmarket.org.