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The Best Farmers' Markets Around the South Bay

Need helping shopping for a sustainable 2020? Check out student engagement intern Mandi Sit's favorite Bay Area farmers' markets to get you started!

With the new year ahead of us, many of us are making sustainable New Year’s resolutions to take action against our changing climate. Going to farmers’ markets is one sustainable way we can respect the earth and our California farmers. This year, I challenge all of us to reduce our food’s carbon footprint and support our local farmers. Around the Bay Area, there are a variety of farmers markets to visit and explore. 

Have a free Friday morning? Check out SCU’s on-campus garden, The Forge Garden’s farm stand. Donation-based and seasonally grown, the Farm Stand has a great variety and is run by the lovely Forge Garden apprentices and manager, Katharine Rondthaler.

For those living on or near campus, the Saturday Santa Clara Farmers' Market on Homestead Road is walking distance from the University and the perfect way to start your weekend. A block long, it is small but big enough to find all your shopping needs, without getting too overwhelmed. It’s also a great place to grab lunch with your friends and you’re always guaranteed to run into a familiar face. 

The Downtown Campbell Farmers’ Market is 5x the size of the Santa Clara Farmers’ Market and is said to have delicious fresh corn tortillas and crepes! Pro tip: Carpool with friends and family to reduce your carbon emissions even more!

If you’re looking to get a little further off-campus, the Mountain View Farmers’ Market offers lots of options for produce as well as artisanal goods and products. My favorite vendor is the almond butter stand! Be sure to go early and leave time for parking, as it tends to get quite crowded. Want a little more adventure? You can also get there using VTA light rail by hopping onto the Green Line from San Jose Diridon station, transfer to the Orange Line and taking it to the end of the line.

Shopping at farmers’ markets is important for the earth and for the livelihoods of the farmers. Through supporting local farmers’ markets, the money goes directly to farmers as there is less middle men in the process, thus supporting the local economy. As well, the food travels a shorter distance, making our food fresher with a smaller carbon footprint.

Of course, don’t forget to bring your own reusable grocery bags and produce bags for your farmers’ market trips. Many vendors also accept reusable jars and containers if you want to order food too! Together, let’s refuse single-use plastic, reduce our waste, and support our local farmers for a sustainable 2020. Happy eating and shopping!