Eating locally and seasonally is easy during the spring and summer months on the Eastern Shore. Our coastal communities are surrounded by farms, both big and small, and waterways that provide us with a tremendous bounty as soon as the weather perks up each year. There’s nothing quite like a juicy red tomato, freshly picked asparagus, or crispy leaves of locally grown lettuce. You know where you can pick up some of the best produce? The Berlin Farmer’s Market.
The Berlin Farmer’s Market is managed and operated by the Berlin Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Berlin. The market supports local, small-scale farmers and gardeners by providing a marketing opportunity to sell produce and farm-related items directly to consumers.
For nearly two decades, the Berlin Farmer’s Market has been a source of some of the freshest local produce, best native plant selection, and wide selection of recently harvested seafood. The market, which is held twice a week, begins in early April and continues until late autumn and is located in downtown Berlin, MD just off of Main Street.
The market is open year-round on Fridays from 10 am – 3 pm. beginning on the first Wednesday in April; and on Wednesday, from 2 pm – 6 pm, too. Wednesday markets commence for the season in October.
The market in Berlin is a producer’s only market. The vendors are the growers and producers of the fruits, vegetables, plants, herbs, flowers, eggs, baked goods, meats, dairy products, jellies, jams, honey, syrup, and other approved products. Second-hand and flea-market type items are not allowed at the Berlin Farmer’s Market. Every single item for sale that the market has been approved by the Berlin Farmer’s Market Board.
All sellers must also be approved by the Health Department, Maryland Department of Agriculture, USDA, and any necessary federal, state, or local licensees needed to produce and sell their items.
The Farmer’s Market Board is strict about their rules, regulations, and guidelines because they want their market to be the best of the best, or the cream of the crop, so to say. For example, ‘organic’ is a word that is sometimes thrown around rather loosely. However, in Berlin, the use of the word ‘organic’ in any form is restricted to the following (taken directly from the Berlin Farmer’s Market 2012 Rules & Regulations document):
- Farmers who are certified under provision of the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s Organic Certification Program.
- Farmer’s from states other than Maryland who are certified by a recognized certification program accepted by the USDA.
- Written proof of certification must be in-hand before the beginning of market season.
- If you are an organic farmer but not certified under provision of the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s Organic Certification Program, you may say you are an ‘organic’ farmer but you may not use the word ‘organic’ to describe the produce you are selling.
It’s nice to know that when you purchase items at this farmer’s market that those items really do come from someone who cares about the product you are receiving. The gardeners, farmers, and bakers listed below are some of many that set up stands at the Berlin Farmer’s Market and ensure that their products are made to the best of their ability…
|A & W Farms||Specializes in native plants; landscaping plants, bedding plants, perennials, annuals, vegetables, and herbs.|
|Holly Hill Handmade Goods||Homemade jams, jellies, and baked goods. Also sells local honey and teas.|
|Longridge Gardens||Fresh cut flowers and herbs. Potted plants, salad greens, dried wreaths, bouquets, and centerpieces.|
|Provident Organic Farm||Fruits and vegetables, mulch and fertilizers. Specializing in sustainability practices.|
|Wells Berry Farm||Hand-picked berries.|
|Wimbrow Farms||Seasonal fruits, berries, and vegetables.|
|Chesterfield Heirlooms||Squash, cucumbers, berries, tomatoes and more grown from heirloom seeds.|
|Pereyra Farms||Fruits, berries, and vegetables.|
|R-DAD||Locally harvested oysters, clams, and seafood.|
|Jim’s Crabs||Soft-shell crabs, blue crabs, and crab meat from Crisfield, MD.|
Make some time in your schedule to enjoy the fruits of our local farmer’s labor. Stop by the Berlin Farmer’s Market:
Berlin Farmer’s Market
- Fridays, year-round
- 10 am – 3 pm
- Weather permitting
- Located next to Worcester Family Services building on North Main Street
- Wednesdays, April – October
- 2 pm – 6 pm
- Rain or Shine
- Located in community parking lot across from Cupcakes in Bloom
Want to see more photos from the Berlin Farmer’s Market? Check out the ShoreBread Photo Gallery.