Thursday, June 5th, 2014
Shopping at the local market – Here are some good reasons for it.
One really good reason for living in Costa Rica is the ability to be able to shop at the local “feria” or farmers market. There isn’t just one, there are local markets all over the city around San Jose, but out in the more rural areas, there is usually just one, held on a Saturday morning and the very best place to buy your fresh fruits and vegetables for the coming week. Fruit and vegetables aren’t the only things available, there are many other items, depending on what the area you are in has to offer. But, if it were only for a few items, it would still be something that should not be missed.
Here are just a few of the reasons to go the local market, if you are living in the area or just a tourist:
1.The local produce that is generally organic and always fresh and of high quality. If it isn’t local the vendors will tell you. However most is at least harvested in Costa Rica. However it is possible that some of the items available come from another country and if they do, they will let you know if they were grown without the use of pesticides. Everything is grown by independent farmers, from small backyard gardens, to hydroponically grown and even larger organic enterprises. There are many items including coffee from small local producers.
2. If you do live in a small rural village, the feria is often a wonderful place to meet and greet others socially. It is a good time to visit with your neighbors, catch up on the local gossip, or trade information about who has some new and interesting items for sale. It is also a great place to have a bite to eat. Often there are vendors who are just there to cook some typical local food for the feria patrons to enjoy. It is always fun to be able to eat a freshly cooked “papusa” or “empanada” right off the griddle.
3. Just like being able to enjoy a local treat, you can also purchase fresh baked goods or prepared foods at the feria. What tastes better than fresh bread, baked from grain that was grown by the baker? Or some chutney or jam that was created out of the fruit that was grown in the local’s garden? It is all there and it is the best way to treat yourself to the gifts that nature has to offer without having to make them yourself.
4. One last way to look at attending and buying from the local’s market is to be able to support the local economy. This is one way that many villagers have of earning a living. They may not have any marketable skills, but they can grow wonderful and beautiful fruit and vegetables in their garden and turn them into tasty delights for you and your family to enjoy.
5. Last but not least, if you buy from the local organic gardener, you are probably going to be eating the healthiest food for your body. You can ask the vendor how the food was grown and processed and know where it came from. So, nothing is more economical, delicious or healthy than buying from the local farmers market in Costa Rica!
For those Casa Oceano guests that elect to take a food plan, most if not all of the vegetables and fruit are purchased from a local vender at the “muelle”, the local pier in nearby Tambor, whose produce is all organically grown. Some of it is flown over from organic farms in the Central Highlands, like lettuce, for this once a week event.