By Jenna Pierson
The Farmers Market at Maryland’ opened for the season on April 4 and will remain a fixture on campus through November 14.
The market, sponsored by the Department of Dining Services, is located on campus in the Tawes Plaza Garden every Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Rain or shine, the market features a variety of local vendors selling items like fresh produce and baked goods, and Green Tidings food truck employees present attendees with a live cooking demonstration each week at 12 p.m.
“The market started in 2012, when Campus Recreation Services and various other entities decided to establish it,” marketing manager Larry Tumlin said. “I love every single part of it.”
Farmers markets offer a way for students to form direct relationships with the people who grow or create the items they purchase, and strengthen the surrounding community both economically and socially, he said.
“This is my third year here at the UMD Farmers Market,” said Neil Vosters, owner and operator of Randalia Bee Hives. “I sell chemical-free bath and body products made with honey.”
The concept of a local farmers market is environmentally friendly as well, with a smaller need for transportation to and from, as well as locally grown food using fewer pesticides — and as a result, sending less carbon into the atmosphere.
“I try to come every week,” junior government and politics major Olivia Delaplaine said. “I don’t have a car, so it can be a challenge to get to the grocery store. It is so nice to be able to buy fresh apples and produce on campus, while also helping members of the community.”
The Farmers Market at Maryland prides itself on the fact that no vendor lives farther than 250 miles away, emphasizing the importance of locality and freshness.The produce options vary weekly.
“I also love being able to purchase fresh foods and herbs,” junior government and politics major Amelia Avis said. This market is really good for the health of students.”