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Visiting The Jacksonville Farmer's Market

Metro Jacksonville visits a treasured urban core destination that's been serving the community and incubating homegrown small businesses since 1938: The Jacksonville Farmer's Market.

Published March 9, 2012 in Neighborhoods      43 Comments    Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article


feature

About The Farmer's Market

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Save 50 to 70+% and more over stores on produce and agricultural food products EVERY single day of the year at the Jacksonville Farmers Market. FREE Admission. Open to the public. Credit, debit, & EBT cards accepted by select vendors. ATM on premises. Drive up parking for shopping ease and covered stalls for comfort.

North Florida's largest and oldest Farmers Market with up to 100 plus farmers/vendors selling retail and wholesale. Seasonal, ethnic, organic, specialty, and unique products arriving fresh daily. Also find seafood, flowers & plants, honey, boiled peanuts, syrups, gourmet dressings, etc. throughout the year.

A real working farmers market visited by over 25,000 people a week from all over the Southeastern U.S. since 1938. Great fun for locals, out-of-towners, kids, grandparents, singles, and families. Also church, senior citizen, community, and school groups.

While you visit, eat breakfast or lunch at Andy's Farmers Market Grill, open Monday through Friday from 6:30 AM to 3:30 PM and Saturdays from 7 AM to 4 PM. Andy's has an extensive menu of hot and cold dishes including hot plates, sandwiches, salads, soups, deserts, beverages, and snacks. Inside and outside dining available.

Easily accessible from I-95 (via Union/Beaver Street from the south and Kings Road/Beaver Street from the north) and I-10 (via Stockton Street). Only minutes west of Downtown Jacksonville and from San Marco, Riverside/Avondale/Ortega, and Springfield. Visit our website for a map.

FREE ride from Downtown, Monday to Friday, 7 AM to & 7 PM, via JTA Beaver Street Trolley Service. Two JTA bus routes also stop at the Jacksonville Farmers Market. See JTA web site for schedules and additional details.
http://www.facebook.com/JaxFarmersMarket?sk=info



History



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Jacksonville Produce Market, renamed the Jacksonville Farmers Market, opened in 1938. Earlier roots are believed to date back to the latter 1800's. Today, JFM is Florida's oldest public farmers market.

Note the horse drawn wagon in the picture above from 1938. Downtown Jacksonville is in the background. Preferred Freezer Services and the east portion of the completely rebuilt (in 2007) JFM sit on this site today.

Subsequent to 1938, several additions, notably concrete block structures, were added to the Jacksonville Farmers Market's original wood and sheet metal structures. At one point, JFM was home to produce packing plants, the southeastern produce operations of the A & P grocery chain, a barber shop, and the best steakhouse in Jacksonville, Sandy's Steer Room.
http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.238486652877989.61466.150020678391254&type=3













The market added Andy's Farmer's Market Grill to its diverse business line up in 2010.

“At first, with this economy I was hesitant to open a place here, so we had a long talk and figured things out,” Akel said.
Now he said business is exceeding his early expectations. Wendy Khan, a downtown office worker looking for fresh produce, is glad Akel opened after enjoying a grilled chicken salad made with fresh items from nearby.
“What better place to go than the Farmers Market,” Khan said. “I figured that around lunch hour, I can come get some vegetables and tie both together.”
full article: http://jacksonville.com/news/metro/2010-05-27/story/fresh-produce-next-door-makes-it-andy’s-farmer’s-market-grill



Recent additions to Andy's offerings include pit-cooked barbeque rib and chicken plates on Fridays and Saturdays.










Sadlers' Sweets & Sauces is one of many locally owned small businesses operating at the market.  Sadlers' sells a variety of seasonings/rubs, hot sauces, jams, baked goods, sweet pickles, and other homemade specialty items.






A variety of fresh seafood items such as Mayport shrimp, live blue crabs, and crawfish are available at the market as well.











The Future: What's Next?



We currently have 9 acres and we’re using most of it. We have one building of 28,000 square feet that’s a former grocery store that we haven’t put into use yet. We do have plans for that, for perhaps indoor stalls or maybe some additional types of vendors. We get a lot of requests for meat vendors, or bakery-type vendors, and we’re looking at that to expand the market. We already have a seafood vendor and from time to time, other vendors. There are a lot of other options that we haven’t fully explored yet, so we see that as a growth opportunity.
http://www.jaxdailyrecord.com/showstory.php?Story_id=535586




The Milwaukee Public Market, shown above and below, is an indoor market that sells produce, seafood, meats, cheeses, vegetables, candies, and flowers from local businesses.  Future plans for the vacant Premier Foods building possibly include converting it into something similar.





The Jacksonville Farmer's Market is located at 1810 West Beaver Street, Jacksonville, FL 32209. It is open seven days a week from 7:00am - 7:00pm.

For more information: www.jaxfarmersmarket.com


Article by Ennis Davis.







43 Comments

Bativac

March 09, 2012, 07:44:43 AM
I've wondered this about the farmer's market since I started going there 10 years ago - how much of the stuff is truly "farmer's market," like produced on a local farm, and how much of it is the same imported stuff I can get at Publix for three times the cost?

Also - it would be fantastic if the farmer's market could start carrying more meat and cheese products, making use of the old grocery store.

ben says

March 09, 2012, 07:57:18 AM
To your first comment, I agree. Some of the produce there has stickers on it identical to what you'd find at Publix. I too wonder if what I'm getting is from a first hand farmer, or a middleman who got a really good deal...

To your second comment, +1.

Garden guy

March 09, 2012, 08:09:03 AM
I never understood why this market wasnt more like whats at RAM.

avs

March 09, 2012, 08:17:09 AM
Most of the stuff there is middle men and it is stuff that is shipped here.  There are a few farmers sprinkled in.You can always ask before you buy from them

ben says

March 09, 2012, 08:20:06 AM
Most of the stuff there is middle men and it is stuff that is shipped here.  There are a few farmers sprinkled in.You can always ask before you buy from them

I love the Jax Farmers Market, but that is pretty disappointing to here.

I never understood why this market wasnt more like whats at RAM.

Kinda glad it's not like RAM. RAM relies less on food, more on activities and entertainment. I prefer the food.

fsujax

March 09, 2012, 08:20:14 AM
I used to always go there with my grandma. Such a cool place.

thelakelander

March 09, 2012, 08:40:39 AM
I love the farmer's market.  It's one of the most culturally diverse places in this city.

mtraininjax

March 09, 2012, 10:13:39 AM
I can't believe the hypocrisy here, we're contemplating where Vegetables come from? Figuring that fuel costs are through the roof, do you think Dole or Del Monte would show up here and look to dump their offerings? These are locals or from our area, I did not ask if there were any folks from California or Arizona on my last trip, but then again, why does it matter? Are the peppers from California that are in Publix all that much better than what is at the Farmer's market? You can also buy shrimp from the side of the road, does that mean the shrimp are caught in Chile and shipped here? Get real!

If you don't like what you see, buy the expensive variety from Publix. Don't forget the REAL farmer's market that 'town puts on in the Shops of Avondale on Sundays.

Why isn't this area more like RAM? Let's allow cars in RAM and see what the difference is. RAM is more of a destination, the river, Riverside, who wants to go and hang out on Beaver and Dennis Street? You might want to if you needed to catch a train to another part of the country.

exnewsman

March 09, 2012, 10:55:52 AM
I'd love to see the Farmer's Market move in the current convention center space and add a couple restaurants. You would have the benefit of having the Skyway bringing people from downtown or people could stop on their way to I-10 or I-95 after work.

When the Jacksonville Terminal is reinvented, you would also have travelers using the venue on a daily basis. The eateries would offer a destiantion as well as use the local produce and other offerings as well as drive more people to the Market.

Plus it would add an element of vibrancy and destination to LaVilla and the proposed Regional Transit Center. Having an all indoors market allows for expansion into meats, cheeses, seafood, etc that may require display cases. You could have permanent spaces as well as occasional set-ups for those who don't need a daily space.

Loading/unloading areas are already set up. There is plenty of parking onsite plus transit is available with more coming. It also would focus local people's attention back downtown.

Similar to the Cleveland West Side Market.
http://www.westsidemarket.org/about.html
 

WmNussbaum

March 09, 2012, 11:35:43 AM
Ahhh, yes. Sandy's Steer Room - originally Abood's Steer Room. It was a madhouse on Fla/Ga weekend and New Years. It came to a violent and fiery demise one evening, and the owner went to jail for arson.

I would love to see it expand with other and different vendors. Flowers would be a wonderful addition, as would a juice bar. If it ever approached the Dekalb County Market in the Atlanta area or even the Western Carolina Farmer'sMarket in Ashville, it would be great.

johnny_simpatico

March 09, 2012, 11:40:01 AM
While it's true that most of the vendors at the Jacksonville Farmers Market are selling the same stuff...and much of that isn't really local, there are real farmers that will show up on the periphery with a trailer full of watermelons or corn.  For buying produce, I find it a far better experience than the Riverside Arts Market.  My guess is that 90% of the stuff sold by Reeds Groves and others at RAM is the same stuff at the Farmers Market, but at more than twice the price.  Check out the discarded boxes at RAM.  The strawberries are from Plant City and nearby places; just like the Farmer's Market.  The tomato boxes?  Same story...same names as can be found at the Farmers Market. It's a fiction that RAM is selling only local produce, unless they define local as including the entire state of Florida, in which case, the Jacksonville Farmers Market is also largely local.

finehoe

March 09, 2012, 11:43:56 AM
....but then again, why does it matter?

Good for farmers
- they’re a different source of revenue, often crucial in today’s difficult farming climate.
- they give farmers greater control over their economic lives.
- farmers can get higher prices - as the middle man is cut out.
- farmers diversify their skills - gaining marketing and business expertise.
- farmers get increased networking and learning opportunities with other farmers.
Good for the local economy
- more money is spent in the local economy, and it circulates in the locality for longer.
- there is high knock-on spending in other shops on market days.
- they provide an outlet for local produce, helping to start new local businesses and expand existing
ones.
- they reinforce local job and business networks, maintaining local employment.
Good for consumers
- consumers enjoy the atmosphere and experience of farmers’ markets.
- consumers get fresh, healthy produce usually at competitive prices.
- they offer increased choice, and can offer extra fresh, affordable produce in areas with few such
options.
- they strengthen community - a key factor in the quality of life in Jacksonville.
Good for the environment
- food travels less far; there are less “food miles”.
- food has less packaging.
- they are an important outlet for farmers selling organic and less intensively-produced food.

Bativac

March 09, 2012, 12:42:26 PM
I can't believe the hypocrisy here, we're contemplating where Vegetables come from? Figuring that fuel costs are through the roof, do you think Dole or Del Monte would show up here and look to dump their offerings? These are locals or from our area, I did not ask if there were any folks from California or Arizona on my last trip, but then again, why does it matter? Are the peppers from California that are in Publix all that much better than what is at the Farmer's market? You can also buy shrimp from the side of the road, does that mean the shrimp are caught in Chile and shipped here? Get real!

Mtrain I'm only asking because I prefer to buy local stuff when I can, and you don't always know - nor can you always trust the vendors at the Jax Farmer's Market. I've asked and been told "yeah it's local" and then found stickers indicating Mexico as the point of origin for things like tomatos that should definitely be available from a local source.

I've gotten excellent local honey and fruit from the farmer's market (local to the region, if not the city). I've also gotten garlic from China, watermelons from Mexico, etc.

Not saying it's good or bad. I'm there every week so obviously it doesn't keep me from buying the stuff. I just wish there were more locally-grown produce items readily available. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place.

iluvolives

March 09, 2012, 01:22:45 PM
I know that the back left hand section of the Farmers market is reserved either for local, or possibly organic- I can't recall which.

Also, you can inspect the produce before you buy it. Typically, the middlemen leave the stickers on.

bill

March 09, 2012, 02:37:58 PM
I can't believe the hypocrisy here, we're contemplating where Vegetables come from? Figuring that fuel costs are through the roof, do you think Dole or Del Monte would show up here and look to dump their offerings? These are locals or from our area, I did not ask if there were any folks from California or Arizona on my last trip, but then again, why does it matter? Are the peppers from California that are in Publix all that much better than what is at the Farmer's market? You can also buy shrimp from the side of the road, does that mean the shrimp are caught in Chile and shipped here? Get real!

Mtrain I'm only asking because I prefer to buy local stuff when I can, and you don't always know - nor can you always trust the vendors at the Jax Farmer's Market. I've asked and been told "yeah it's local" and then found stickers indicating Mexico as the point of origin for things like tomatos that should definitely be available from a local source.

I've gotten excellent local honey and fruit from the farmer's market (local to the region, if not the city). I've also gotten garlic from China, watermelons from Mexico, etc.

Not saying it's good or bad. I'm there every week so obviously it doesn't keep me from buying the stuff. I just wish there were more locally-grown produce items readily available. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place.

Try Lakeshore Produce. It does the best I have seen at getting at least Florida produce.

Fallen Buckeye

March 09, 2012, 05:20:50 PM
I know Florida is a big farming state, but in my travels around North Florida most of the rural areas seem to be timber land or pasture. We would obviously have to have farmland to have local farmers, so I must not be paying close enough attention. Not to complain. I'm sure the produce there is great, but I was just curious if there is a farming industry in North Florida.

dougskiles

March 09, 2012, 06:37:28 PM
Not much commercial farming in our area - and I think it may have a lot to do with our soil and weather.  Somewhere along the way, landowners realized they got more yield from trees and cows.

Garden guy

March 09, 2012, 07:20:28 PM
Potatoes are  big in this area.

aaapolito

March 09, 2012, 08:36:18 PM
This farmers market is a great asset to our city.  I know that the article mentions the occasional seafood vendor, and I think that's great, but wouldn't it be great to see the market expand to a similar selection like the Borough Market on the South Bank of London:  http://www.boroughmarket.org.uk/page/traders; adding meat, fish, dairy and other artisan food vendor?

After reading this article and the one in the Jax Daily Record a few weeks ago, I have no doubt that the leadership at the Farmers Market would consider adding these features, if they believe that it would be a lucrative venture.

Non-RedNeck Westsider

March 09, 2012, 08:39:30 PM
Potatoes are  big in this area.

Most of the potatoes in this area are underneath WGV and Murabella.

Keith-N-Jax

March 09, 2012, 10:38:42 PM
I love the farmers market as well, great place, great fruits and veggies.

urbanlibertarian

March 10, 2012, 09:31:17 AM
I'd love to see the Farmer's Market move in the current convention center space and add a couple restaurants. You would have the benefit of having the Skyway bringing people from downtown or people could stop on their way to I-10 or I-95 after work.

When the Jacksonville Terminal is reinvented, you would also have travelers using the venue on a daily basis. The eateries would offer a destiantion as well as use the local produce and other offerings as well as drive more people to the Market.

Plus it would add an element of vibrancy and destination to LaVilla and the proposed Regional Transit Center. Having an all indoors market allows for expansion into meats, cheeses, seafood, etc that may require display cases. You could have permanent spaces as well as occasional set-ups for those who don't need a daily space.

Loading/unloading areas are already set up. There is plenty of parking onsite plus transit is available with more coming. It also would focus local people's attention back downtown.

Similar to the Cleveland West Side Market.
http://www.westsidemarket.org/about.html
 

I'd like to see the farmers market stay put because 1. I think the historic nature of the present site has value and 2. it's an important resource for the folks in that neighborhood.  Also the gritty flea market atmosphere is a plus IMO.

thelakelander

March 10, 2012, 09:57:59 AM
^I agree with this.  That area of town is a food desert and the farmer's market serves as the grocery store residents don't have.  Personally, I'd like to see the farmer's market become an anchor for "wholesale" or "market" district along Beaver Street.

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2011-may-walkable-commercial-districts-west-beaver-street

Perhaps something similar to Detroit's Eastern Market  (http://www.metrojacksonville.com/forum/index.php?topic=370.0).  I'd like to see existing companies such as Beaver Street Fisheries, Condaxis Coffee, and White Wave Foods consider selling products to the general public.  I'd like to see other food related industries infill existing vacant warehouses for manufacturing/wholesale operations as well.  Here's an example of what's floating around in my head that I believe Beaver Street would be prefect for:



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Eastern Market's Milano Bakery plant also features a dine-in bakery that sells goods that are manufactured in the same building (see below). This is an example of a mix of uses that would complement the development of Beaver Street, as to make it into a district that accommodates both industrial and wholesale businesses within a fairly walkable urban district.



Also, it seems like bringing in additional indoor vendors is a part of their current plan.  Those operations will be housed in the vacant grocery store building, they already own next door to the sheds.

Debbie Thompson

March 10, 2012, 02:03:31 PM
When I was young, my mom used to buy hindquarters from the Premier market, and whole pigs.  They would butcher and wrap it for you, cutting it up just the way you asked them to.  You could buy a whole cow if you had the freezer room for one.  Too bad that's not still available.

peestandingup

March 10, 2012, 02:52:49 PM
Lake, I'm not sure about the others, but Condaxis Coffee does sell to the general public. I've done it many times & get raw coffee beans there by the pound. You just have to walk up the front office & ring the bell.

But I know what you're saying. Its not advertised & its not exactly apparent. I don't know why they (and the others) don't sell at the market across the street. Seems like it would be easy enough & lucrative for them.

urbanlibertarian

March 10, 2012, 04:12:25 PM
Seems like Condaxis used to advertise on WOKV.  Maybe you called them and they sent a salesperson by to see you?

peestandingup

March 10, 2012, 04:18:07 PM
Seems like Condaxis used to advertise on WOKV.  Maybe you called them and they sent a salesperson by to see you?

Ha, nope. Just basically walked in & said "gimme some beans!". ;D

I don't think I'm a special case though. They have a couple burlap sacks right up front for people like me buying small batches that they just scoop out & bag. I don't see what they couldn't just take a few sacks across the street to sell at the market. I know people would buy it, especially since foot traffic is much higher over there.

thelakelander

March 10, 2012, 05:22:48 PM
^I think it would greatly benefit the entire Beaver Street strip if that type of activity was widely promoted and embraced by additional businesses in the area.  Imagine if Condaxis had a similar set up to Bold Bean, where a coffeehouse with outdoor seating is integrated into operations.   Imagine if more food related companies were along that stretch and included wholesale retail operations as well?  It may be wishful thinking on my end, but I've seen areas like this become very popular destinations when a mix of industrial, wholesale, and retail operations are put together within a compact setting.

peestandingup

March 10, 2012, 05:41:15 PM
Yep, that would be pretty awesome Lake & I totally agree. In fact, when I started buying from them a couple years ago (and well before Bold Bean did it), I asked Mr Condaxis himself if he ever thought about making a coffee shop wing to his place (kinda like Bold City did with their taproom). I've been to other places like that that had a sorta warehouse feel to it where they both roast/serve & its really cool. I know Bold Bean does this now, but this has more of an old school down home truly industrial feel to it. Like I said, picture Bold City but just with coffee.

Anyways, he didn't think it was a great idea. But they recently retired & sold the business I believe, so thats probably another reason why they didn't want to get into it.

Wacca Pilatka

March 10, 2012, 06:01:56 PM
^I think it would greatly benefit the entire Beaver Street strip if that type of activity was widely promoted and embraced by additional businesses in the area.  Imagine if Condaxis had a similar set up to Bold Bean, where a coffeehouse with outdoor seating is integrated into operations.   Imagine if more food related companies were along that stretch and included wholesale retail operations as well?  It may be wishful thinking on my end, but I've seen areas like this become very popular destinations when a mix of industrial, wholesale, and retail operations are put together within a compact setting.

Like the Strip District in Pittsburgh?

Fallen Buckeye

March 10, 2012, 07:07:56 PM
Yep, that would be pretty awesome Lake & I totally agree. In fact, when I started buying from them a couple years ago (and well before Bold Bean did it), I asked Mr Condaxis himself if he ever thought about making a coffee shop wing to his place (kinda like Bold City did with their taproom). I've been to other places like that that had a sorta warehouse feel to it where they both roast/serve & its really cool. I know Bold Bean does this now, but this has more of an old school down home truly industrial feel to it. Like I said, picture Bold City but just with coffee.

Anyways, he didn't think it was a great idea. But they recently retired & sold the business I believe, so thats probably another reason why they didn't want to get into it.

Do you think that they would get enough business in that neighborhood to justify the expense? I used to work around the corner from there. It wasn't exactly the sit in Starbucks surfing the web with your laptop crowd.

I do think that opening a meat market would be a really great thing for that neighborhood. It seems to me like there is already a little seafood market across from that liquor store, but expanding the seafood options would still be great, too.

thelakelander

March 10, 2012, 07:11:09 PM
^Bingo about the Strip district.



thelakelander

March 10, 2012, 07:14:42 PM
Do you think that they would get enough business in that neighborhood to justify the expense? I used to work around the corner from there. It wasn't exactly the sit in Starbucks surfing the web with your laptop crowd.

I do think that opening a meat market would be a really great thing for that neighborhood. It seems to me like there is already a little seafood market across from that liquor store, but expanding the seafood options would still be great, too.

I can't speak to individual business feasibility numbers but market districts, in general, tend to be gritty and industrial.  Definitely not hangouts for Starbucks/wifi surfing types.  Nevertheless, they can be important economic engines and small business incubators within urban core areas.

Fallen Buckeye

March 10, 2012, 10:49:36 PM
I understand your vision of the district and think that would great. I was just saying that I'm not sure that a coffeehouse would have worked in that spot at this time. And speaking of a market district, I think it would be particularly great to play up our fishing/shrimping industry.

Jax Farmers Market

March 11, 2012, 03:59:48 AM
Thank you, MJ for the ongoing coverage & support by you and your readers of the Jacksonville Farmers Market (JFM).  JFM is operated as a community service by its owners with support from its customers, vendors, area residents, community groups, and the City of Jacksonville.

In response to the article and reader posts, JFM would like to furnish some additional information:

As Florida's oldest public farmers market, JFM is unique for being a working farmers market hosting farmers, retailers, and wholesalers every day of the year (including holidays), from dawn to dusk.

Unlike weekend or seasonal markets, JFM customers expect one stop shopping for a wide range of produce, agricultural products, and other food items requiring vendors to carry product from local, regional, national, and international sources.  Local and regional (Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas, and other Southeastern states) products are always preferred due to their proximity and can be found in abundance at JFM during their respective seasons.  Availability can be subject to climate and updates are typically posted weekly on our Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/JaxFarmersMarket.  When product is not available in this area, vendors will supplement with product still in season in other areas.  This is necessary to sustain vendors throughout the year so they can sell area produce when it is in season.

Additionally, JFM is a significant source for ethnic (e.g. Hispanic and Asian) and unique items not found elsewhere.  These items sometimes can only be sourced from other areas of the country or internationally.

We suggest interested purchasers familiarize themselves with the harvest seasons of local product (such as monitoring JFM's Facebook page) and discuss with their favorite JFM vendors the source of their products.

JFM actively works with area farmers to rent space or to arrange to sell their product on the market.  Unfortunately, due to the urbanization of our area, there are far fewer local farms than just 20 years ago.  Also, many farmers are not aware of the opportunity afforded by JFM's volume of shoppers and the ease of renting space (daily to monthly, one stall to many, for only dollars a day).  We always appreciate referrals of farmers and vendors via email on our website, http://www.jaxfarmersmarket.com/ or by calling our office and asking for our general manager, Greg, at 904-354-2821.

Many ask us about how farmers sell at JFM.  Farmers may sell directly off their trucks or trailers on our "farmers line" on the gravel area on the eastern side of the market at the edge of the parking lot.  Typical of most farmers markets around the country, today, most of these farmers prefer to wholesale quickly to JFM vendors between 3 AM and early daylight hours so that they may return to their farms rather than spend their days selling.  Permanent JFM vendors, in turn, sell the farmers' product direct to the public, fine restaurants, roadside stands, purveyors in "weekend" markets, suburban produce stores, etc.  Some JFM vendors maintain their own truck fleets and go direct to farms to bring back product to JFM.  Still, other farmers will rent their own stalls at JFM to sell on a seasonal basis.  Regardless of the method, area farmers' seasonal output is always available at JFM.

Due to the direct sourcing and low overhead of JFM's many small business vendors, product at JFM is generally available at the lowest prices, typically 50 to 70+% below any store or other venue prices.

JFM is a catalyst for economic development.  In addition to vendors averaging over 100 employees daily, JFM is an incubator for many small and family businesses.  JFM serves the surrounding community, identified as a "food desert" (i.e. underserved by grocery stores), with healthy foods and by encouraging vendors to accept EBT/SNAP (formerly known as food stamps).  This service has been recognized recently by visits from Florida Commissioner of Agriculture, Adam Putnam, and USDA Deputy Secretary, Kathleen Merrigan.

JFM is excited about its potential to grow by expanding use of our 2 acre gravel lot and the adjacent 28,000 square foot former grocery store.  We are always open to new vendors and have recently added ones selling such items as organics, natural juices, sauces, salsa, rubs, dressings, baked goods, jams, jellies, honey, boiled peanuts, kettle corn, and fried pork skin.  They join existing produce and seafood (Mayport shrimp, seafood, live crabs, smoked fish, etc.) vendors.  Vendors can vary daily so contact JFM, monitor our Facebook page's "Vendor Spotlights", or contact the vendor for their specific hours.  Interested new vendors should contact Greg per above.

We hope the above information addresses concerns MJ readers have and we will monitor this thread from time to time for any additional comments.   Or, visit our Facebook page with your thoughts.  Thanks again to MJ and its readers for their support.  JFM has a very limited marketing budget and relies heavily on social media and word of mouth to build traffic to support further growth.  School, church, community, and tour groups can also arrange tours of JFM.








Fallen Buckeye

March 11, 2012, 12:33:34 PM
Thanks for the info. Keep up the great work!

WmNussbaum

March 11, 2012, 03:53:55 PM
JFM:

Some of your customers aren't just looking for produce cheaper than they can get at the supermarkets. If you were to add a decent size booth with products from BSF, I'll bet you would attract more of that type of shopper. Does BSF's relationships with its customers prohibit going into retail?

Jax Farmers Market

March 12, 2012, 08:02:46 PM
Buckeye and Wm, thanks for the added comments and suggestions.  Wm, we are delighted that you enjoy BSF's SeaBest brand products to ask for them at JFM.

JFM already has one or more seafood vendors.  As retailers, they, along with any new JFM vendors, have the option of purchasing any products they wish, at wholesale, from BSF, just like the many other retailers throughout the Western Hemisphere that BSF supplies.  If JFM customers express an interest in such items, and subject to vendors ability to purvey such items (credit, refrigeration, food safety, etc.), existing or new vendors would be welcome to carry the items you suggest in your post.

As present, BSF is a wholesale frozen seafood distributor, geared toward selling retailers, foodservice distributors, and larger specialty users of seafood and meats in wholesale quantities, so it would not be a candidate for direct retailing at JFM.

Ultimately, we agree on the desire to have a more diversified group of food vendors at JFM and welcome inquiries from all parties.  Please refer such inquiries to our general manager, Greg, 904-354-2821, or via email under "Contact Us" on our web page at http://www.jaxfarmersmarket.com/.



Debbie Thompson

March 12, 2012, 09:11:29 PM
Went to the Farmer's Market after church on Sunday.  Three big red bell peppers for $1.  They are $3.99 a POUND at the grocery. Yellow peppers at another vendor 3 for $2 and green 2 for $1.   Big basket of grape tomatoes for $2.  The equivalent would be about $7 at Publix.  Made a chicken/pepper/onion stir fry from the peppers last night. Sweet, crispy yummy and fresh.

Jax Farmers Market

June 02, 2012, 08:47:37 AM
For lovers of Jacksonville Farmers Market, today, from 10 AM to 2 PM, revel in our FREE Summer Fun & Wellness Festival, co-sponsored with St. Vincent's HealthCare.  Enjoy cooking demos & samples from Black Sheep/Black Hog Farm and other chefs, live entertainment, face painting, bounce house, Model A cars, health screenings, exhibits, & much more.

This event is to promote healthy eating and living, especially in the midst of a food desert.  Enjoy some beautiful weather too.  JFM will be open its usual hours, dawn to dusk, today, as it is every day of the year.

cityimrov

August 22, 2012, 07:02:53 PM
You know what would be nice?  If there was an easy way way to differentiate between local, regional, and elsewhere.  Having signs near produce which which say
  • "Just Local" for produce within a 50 mile radius.
  • "Florida Fresh" for produce from Florida
  • "Georgia Fresh" for produce from Georgia
  • "Good Values" for produce from everywhere else
  • "Certified Organic" for produce that are organically grown
  • "Definitely Not Science" for produce that are not genetically modified
It would make life much easier if the Farmers Market can somehow manage something like this so that visitors have a clue what they are buying.

Jax Farmers Market

September 01, 2012, 06:26:44 PM
A few Jacksonville Farmers Market updates since this article first appeared:

1) We have added to our Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/JaxFarmersMarket) a tab, "Frequent Questions", that addresses many of the questions & comments raised in this thread.  We hope it better explains the operations of farmers & vendors at JFM.

2) We recently hosted our first & very successful "Farm to Truck" event last weekend with Jax Truckies and Mike B's  (thank you both!) and plan to make this a recurring event at JFM.  We also hope to host a food truck rally of some sort when convenient for the food truckies.  [Some pix can be found at: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=415569488503037&set=a.415569305169722.98982.150020678391254&type=1&theater]

3) We are currently in the early phase of exploring with possible "vendor partners" concepts and ideas for developing the undeveloped 6 acres we own (2 acres of gravel to the east and 4 acres including a gutted 28,000 sf closed grocery store to the west).  If financially feasible and executed, this could more than double JFM and its current approximate 25,000 visitors a week.  If anyone wishes to make suggestions or put such potential partners in contact with us, please email pertinent details to jfmwebsitefeedback@beaverfish.com (also found via our website's "Contact Us" tab at http://www.jaxfarmersmarket.com/contact.asp). 

Our thoughts currently range from a variety of meat, bakery, seafood, salads/soups, dairy/cheese/ice cream, candy/sweets, plant/flowers, gourmet/ethnic food, local brewery/beer, winery/wine, coffee/tea, kitchen/restaurant wares/supplies, etc. businesses to a canning/demonstration kitchen, meeting/classroom space, and even an added mid to upscale lunch/dinner restaurant in addition to an event venue/plaza.  (NOTE:  Please do not be offended if we do not reply personally to every email should we get a large quantity of suggestions.  Rest assured, we will do our best to thoughtfully consider & evaluate all submissions for community interest, appropriateness to our vision for JFM, and financial feasibility.)

Thanks for everyone's interest and support of JFM.

Spence

November 18, 2012, 04:03:12 AM
Though I may have only recently discovered this site, the farmers market is a place of intimate familiarity.
Seems to make logical sense to reconnect our now inner ring communities to our core with a time and energy saving mode of transit for the masses.

Metro Jacksonville lists many "urban" "walkable" neighborhoods.
On the West and North side of the River St.John, Cassat Ave connects a vast multitude of diverse  neighborhoods without causing further congestion on, or competing with higher speeds on Blanding, Roosevelt, etc.

What are the plans for streetcar again?

we may have had nearly 60 miles of track before, we could benefit from hundreds!
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