hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

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January 3, 2013

Summer or winter, farmers market deserves support

It was just a few years ago that the city’s farmers market made a comeback.

The market thrived many years ago, then died out due to a lack of interest. With the backing of the Team Haverhill Civic organization, it is operating again in the late summer, giving local farmers a place to sell their goods other than out-of-the-way roadside stands.

It also gives residents a place to buy the freshest stuff around and a way to support their community’s farmers.

It works for everyone involved.

This year, there was a new twist on the farmers market theme. Haverhill’s first winter farmers market operated for a month and was a success, organizers said. (See story, page 1.)

It was located at Universalist Unitarian Church and featured fresh eggs, winter squash, pastries and other items that drew locals to shop there.

“People liked buying locally and they asked for a winter market, so we tried it last year for the first time, after our regular summer farmers market, and the winter one went well,” Jeff Grasse of the Team Haverhill civic group told the Gazette.

Team Haverhill, an organization of volunteers from across the community, helped bring the summer farmers market back and also helped create the winter market.

Leaders of Universalist Unitarian Church said they opened up their building to the market to support healthy living.

The winter market offered a great variety of products. Produce from local farms such as Fletcher Farm, Kimball Farm and Stasinos Family Farm packed the market. There were also non-traditional farmers market items such as gluten-free baked goods from Madison’s Sweet Treats.

We encourage organizers of both the summer and winter farmers markets to continue them and widen the number of participants. We also hope residents will shop at the markets, and that those who haven’t yet stopped by do so.

You’re likely to find something you like — and tasty foods that are good for the family.

And you’re sure to help small farms and other businesses that need the support, especially during winter when sales tend to be slow.

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