Written by Arkansas Real Estate
This week we had the chance to chat with Lori Boatright, Public and Media Coordinator with the Fayetteville Farmer's Market. If you have never checked out the Fayetteville Farmer's Market you are missing one of Northwest Arkansas' treasures. The Market has had a very successful year and has even brought a lot of national attention to our area including being featured on the National Food Truck Race on Food Network. Thank you, Lori, for chatting with us this week!
The Fayetteville Farmers’ Market was founded in 1973 as a way for citizens living within the four NWA counties to create additional income from products they could grow or make with their hands and imaginations. By July 1974, the Market launched on the Downtown Fayetteville Square and will celebrate it’s 40th anniversary next season.
What recent success has the Market had?
The Market has seen continued growth through the years as more people become more educated about the benefits of supporting sustainable family farms. As a patron of the Market, you not only have access to the freshest food items, you are supporting the community in which you live. In 2012, American Farmland Trust named the Fayetteville Farmers’ Market “America’s Favorite Farmers’ Market”. This recognition highlights the FFM for it’s successes in providing access to locally produced food and it’s commitment to sustainability. Arkansas has long been known as a leader in several agricultural fields. We’re number 1 in rice production, #2 in poultry production. Now Arkansas is known as a leader in small scale agriculture as well. The Market was also named Washington County Agricultural Leader of the Year by the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce. “Celebrate” magazine named the FFM the Best Free Seasonal Outing. The Market also received “Best Green Business” award for their commitment to advancing sustainability in our community.
The FFM is a member/farmer owned organization. All decisions are made from the small producer prospective. Through educations, demonstrations and farm tours, the Market strives to not only bring more people to the markets, but to emphasis the importance of locally small scale agriculture and artists in NW Arkansas. The Market has partnered with Feed Fayetteville and Seed that Feed to raise awareness of food insecurity in our community. The Market donated over 20,000 of produce this season to local food banks and soup kitchens. By partnering with like minded organizations, we are able to give back to the community that has supported us for 40 years.
What are you looking forward to over the next season?
The Fayetteville Farmers’ Market will be opening a Winter Market, Saturday, December 15th at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks. The Market will be open from 10-2 Saturdays through March. Shoppers will be able to find a surprisingly diverse selection of fresh, local produce, meats, eggs, baked goods and fine arts and crafts. As the 40th season approaches, many new events and educational opportunities are being planned. The FFM hopes to also host an evening market next season in addition to their other days and hours of operation. We will keep this information posted on our website at -