Santa Cruz River Farmers’ Market Among Top 20 Finalists in America’s Favorite Farmer’s Markets™ Contest

Santa Cruz River Farmers’ Market is among 20 leading farmers markets across the nation vying for the title of America’s Favorite Farmers Market in the boutique category (1-15 vendors).  In celebration of National Farmers Market Week, online leader-boards listing the top 20 markets in each category of the America’s Favorite Farmers Markets™ contest were released by American Farmland Trust.

Santa Cruz River Farmers’ Market

100 S. Avenida del Convento (at Mercado San Agustin)

Thursdays, 4-7 PM

“We are excited to be listed among the top 20 markets in the boutique category,” said Sara Rickard, Community Food Bank Farmers’ Market Manager.  “We are unique because we make fresh, local food more accessible to community members of all income levels by accepting food stamps and AZ Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program vouchers for WIC participants and seniors.”  If you haven’t already voted, please go to www.farmland.org/vote and select the Santa Cruz River Farmers’ Market.

Online voting for America’s Favorite Farmers Markets” opened June 1 and runs through midnight on August 31, when four winning markets—one large, one medium, one small, and one boutique—will receive the title of America’s Favorite Farmers Market for 2011.  The market in each state with the most votes will also win a prize from American Farmland Trust and its partners.

National Farmers Market Week, an observance led by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), recognizes the 7,175 farmers markets across the country that support local farms, provide fresh, seasonal foods, and serve as community gathering places.  According to the USDA, the number of farmers markets across the nation increased by 1,000 markets between 2010 and 2011.

“It’s exciting that consumers are fueling the growth of farmers markets across America,” said American Farmland Trust President Jon Scholl.  “Voters in our contest are enthusiastic about their local markets and appreciate the opportunity to get to know the people who grow their food.  I look forward to watching the competition heat up even further as the leading markets race to the finish line!”

The America’s Favorite Farmers Markets contest is a part of American Farmland Trust’s No Farms No Food® campaign, which raises awareness of the dangers of farmland loss by making connections to food.  Farms near metropolitan areas produce 91 percent of the nation’s market value of fruit, 78 percent of vegetables, and 67 percent of dairy products.

To view the top 20 leader-boards or to vote in the America’s Favorite Farmers Markets contest, visit www.farmland.org/vote.