Farmers Market News


2014 Summer Raymond Farmers Market

The 2014 Summer Raymond Farmers Market will not open this year.

Unfortunately the decision was made after discussion amongst the vendors who felt there just was not enough customer interest or purchases to make it worth while for them to load up their products and equipment and come to the Riverbend Market Place in Raymond for 3 hours every Tuesday. Many vendors have chosen to sell out of their farms or homes.

The same vendors also set up at the Epping Farmers Market on Friday afternoons which is also not opening this year.

There is a farmers market held every Thursday at 2pm in Exeter.

If you have any questions or want more information contact Cheryl Killam by email at cherylkillam@comcast.net or call 679-8656.


Plan your season of success at the farmers markets - 3-15-13

Are you looking to fine tune your marketing skills for selling at the farmers market? Would you like to make your trip to the market a successful one for your farm business and your customers? A workshop for growers and market managers, "A Season of Success at the Farmers Market," will be held on Thursday, April 4 from 5 to 8 p.m. and Tuesday, April 16 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Attendees are free to attend either session, both will cover how to market your product using safe food handling practices, transporting food products, and serving food samples. Also covered will be the business side of selling at the farmers market, effectively displaying produce and other farm products, quality, signage, and how to maintain a customer base.

The workshop presenters will be Alice Mullen and Nada Haddad, UNH Cooperative Extension Field Specialists, Food and Agriculture. The free sessions are sponsored by UNH Cooperative Extension, Rockingham County, and the Seacoast Growers Association.

Each workshop will be held at the Rockingham County Complex Nursing Home's Hilton Auditorium, 117 North Road, in Brentwood. Pre-registration is appreciated in order that presenters can plan accordingly. Visit www.seacoastgrowers.org for a link to the simple online registration form. For more information, contact Lynn Harrison at 603-679-5616 or lynn.harrison@unh.edu.


Raymond Farmers’ Market Serves the Local Community
By Heather Vitella 9-13-12

As you drive south on Rt 102 through Raymond, signs advertising a Tuesday Farmers’ Market greet you on the side of the road. And when you turn into the parking lot at the Riverbend Market Place at 64 Freetown Road (Route 102), plenty of parking and many vendors await.

Now going into its third season, the non-profit Raymond Farmers’ Market regularly hosts 14 vendors that carry items ranging from fresh lobsters and local cuts of pork to baked foods, organic produce and fresh, canned goods.

Vendors Rick and Lynda Kennedy, who own Kenne-bees, offering their own honey and beeswax candles, sell at three markets per week (Raymond, Hampton Falls and Epping) and enjoy the current Raymond location. “There is a good stream of traffic, and the grass offers a nice place to set up and be sheltered from the heat,” said Rick Kennedy. 

Kennedy expressed concern that the residents of Raymond may not know the market exists. “It is up to people to choose to shop locally and make this market a success,” he said.

While Raymond has a supermarket and others are in nearby Epping, the Farmers’ Market, which runs both summer and winter, brings another option to the community.  

Kara Grellmann of Kara’s Kreations, a vendor of beaded jewelry, also likes the current location and said it gets good traffic and exposure, being right off Rt 102.

Shelly Smith of Burnt Swamp Farm, which sells fresh produce grown on its farm in South Hampton, also appreciates this year’s location.  She sells at five markets per week and said the Raymond market compares well to the others.

Debby Duckworth of Debby D’s Homemade sells her own canned jams, jellies, pickled produce and relishes.  She noted the customers coming from the nearby Pine Acres campground.  The overall market traffic was slow at the beginning of the summer but has picked up, she said.

Joy Paquin, a regular customer at the Farmers’ Market, stops by weekly to shop.  “It is exciting to drive along and see a Farmers’ Market”, she said, noting the location is convenient for Raymond residents.

Debby Pasho, another market customer, when asked about shopping and eating locally said, "I like to plan my recipes and then go to the farmers market to get my produce. Then, I go to the grocery store after that. I like to buy my eggs from local people and my produce from the farmers' markets. I will only do this if it is convenient though. I won't drive 30 minutes to purchase something locally."

When asked about the new location, Pasho said, "I like it. It is easier to get in and out of than the old location. I can see it right away from the road and the signs let me know it is going to be that day. It seems like more people came this summer." 

The Raymond Farmers’ Market began operating as a winter market in December 2010 managed by the town. Once the winter market, held at Lamprey River Elementary School, concluded for the season, the town put out a call for volunteers to take over market operation so that a town employee did not have to do so.

After a few months passed with no volunteers, local business woman Cheryl Killam, owner of Raymond Area News, contacted farmers and vendors to see if they were interested in continuing the Raymond market and took on the market organization. The Raymond Farmers’ Market, under Killam’s management, opened in June 2011, and ran on Tuesday afternoons through the end of September, thanks to the donated use of the Famous Legends Sports Bar & Grill parking lot off Route 102.

While a few market days were cancelled because of extreme heat or thunderstorms, that first summer market season proved that Raymond area residents and visitors were eager to shop for local products.

Killam also continued the winter market, opening in December 2011 at the elementary school and meeting the third Saturday of the month, so as not to compete with the winter markets at Exeter and Rollinsford on the second and fourth Saturdays of the month. New farmers and vendors joined some of the regulars from the previous market, and Killam said it was nice to see the same customers returning, even on days when there were snowstorms.

The Raymond Farmers’ Market faced new challenges this summer over advertising because it was not a non-profit, and as a result, the market vendors banded together to become a non-profit organization, selected a board of directors and received non-profit status from the state for the “Raymond Farmers’ Market” on Aug. 13.

Killam said this summer’s market proved to be the best so far with its new location in the field at the Riverbend Market Place, thanks to the donation from the Riverbend Market Place Condo Association.

The Raymond Farmers’ Market continues through September, with the final summer market of the season on Sept. 25 from 3 to 6:30 p.m.

And even as summer draws to a close, plans are in the works for the winter Raymond Farmers’ Market, which opens Dec. 15 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lamprey River Elementary School.

For more information, contact Ms. Killam at 679-8656 or visit the farmers market page.


Farmers markets Shopper Survey
From mid-July through August 30th, customers of Seacoast New Hampshire farmers markets will have the opportunity to weigh in about their shopping experience at farmers markets located in Rockingham and Strafford Counties through an online survey.  The survey is part of UNH College of Life Sciences and Agriculture and UNH Cooperative Extension's research on farmers' markets in Rockingham and Strafford Counties.

The survey seeks information that could be used to enhance customers' shopping experience, augment vendor sales, and strengthen the long-term viability of the markets. Vibrant farmers' markets are important for the sustainability of local farms and agriculture-related enterprises. Farmers' markets in Rockingham and Strafford Counties continue to support this study, and special assistance is being provided by the NH Department of Agriculture, Markets, & Food, the Seacoast Growers Association, and Seacoast Eat Local.

Participants of the survey can enter for a chance to win one of four $25 vouchers to spend at their local markets.  Four individuals will be selected after the August 30th closing date and the winners will be announced by September 15th.

To participate click  UNH Farmers Market Customer Survey between now and August 30, 2012.


Seniors Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program: Farm Fresh for Seniors

Concord,  NH  -  Starting in mid-July, the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP), also called the NH Farm Fresh Delivery Program, will begin distributing  fresh  produce to more than 4,500 low-income seniors. Seniors are  enrolled  through the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, or CSFP, at statewide  clinic sites in the State. CSFP is run by the Division of Public Health Services at the NH Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

Farm  Fresh  provides  seniors with a fresh, locally grown bundle of fruits and  vegetables  grown by more than 25 farmers in New Hampshire. The bundle has a value of about $18.00 and includes at least four different fruits and vegetables,  ranging from apples to zucchini. Fruits and vegetables will be distributed  to seniors through mid-September at more than 60 CSFP sites in New  Hampshire.  Seniors  will also receive recipe ideas and tips on how to prepare and store fresh fruits and vegetables.

CSFP  is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and currently reaches about  4,600 low-income seniors 60 years and older in New Hampshire. Income guidelines are up to:
            $1,211 monthly for a senior living alone
            $1,640 for a family of two seniors
CSFP  provides  a  monthly food benefit that includes canned meats, fruits, vegetables,  cereal,  juice,  pasta, rice, and cheese, plus recipe ideas on how to use the foods in healthy recipes.

“Public  health  nutrition  programs  like  these provide healthy nutrition
services  to  at-risk  low-income  seniors  who  may  have a difficult time
finding  low-cost  nutritious  foods,”  said  Dr. José Montero, Director of
Public  Health at DHHS. “By providing these foods and education to seniors, we  hope  to  prevent  the  onset  of  chronic diseases such as obesity and diabetes.”

Seniors 60 years and older who meet the income guidelines are encouraged to call   the  Healthy  Eating  and  Physical  Activity  Section  of  DHHS  at 1-800-942-4321  to  learn how to apply for CSFP and SFMNP services in their community. CSFP and SFMNP are equal opportunity programs.


Local Beekeepers Sell Their Wares at Farmers Market
By Leslie O’Donnell For Raymond Area News

Part of the fun of visiting a Farmers Market or fair is finding something you didn’t anticipate – a new variety of tomato, perhaps.

That’s the kind of thing that happened to Rick and Lynda Kennedy of Raymond when they attended the Topsfield Fair in Topsfield, Mass., several years ago. Topsfield has a building devoted to beekeeping, and its exhibits piqued the couple’s interest – so much so that they returned the following year to attend bee school. “We’ve been keeping bees ever since,” Rick said.

The Kennedys own and operate Kenne-bees, which sells wildflower honey and beeswax candles from their hives. They and their products are a fixture at the Raymond Farmers Market year round.

Husband and wife work in the fields with the bees and with the honey processing, and Lynda does all the candle molding. The couple has eight hives dispersed around Raymond, Chester and Derry, and expect to double that number soon. Spring is the time to start new hives, Rick said, and when the weather is warm, he will split hives in good shape to make new ones. The new hives have all the resources but a queen, and he said the bees will communicate among themselves to create a queen.

Rick emphasizes that they keep their bees in as natural an environment as possible. In the New Hampshire area, he said, there are no large enough tracts of land devoted to a single crop to produce a varietal honey, such as blueberry or clover. As a result, his honey can range from fruit tree and berry bush blossoms to clover to dandelions to squash and pumpkin blossoms.

“Everything you see – wildflowers, forsythia, azalea” - attracts the bees, he said, noting that in the spring, honey tends to be lighter, while in the late summer and fall, it is darker, based on what nectar the bees get.
Rick and Lynda do not start collecting honey until the end of June or early July. Spring is what he terms the “build-up” period for the bees, when they are just starting to store the honey. “It got warm early this year,” he said, noting that has the potential to impact the harvest, as did the recent rains - bees do not fly in the rain. But there’s no way to predict what Mother Nature will do.

Originally from Malden, Mass., Rick said he has spent about half his life in New Hampshire – eight years in Derry and a Raymond resident since 1995.

“My bees get to do what they want,” he said. “I have a non-invasive philosophy of beekeeping. The hive stays where it is – I don’t move them around. The ones who get through the winter get to work in the spring.”

While moving bee hives from place to place dates back to ancient Egypt, when hives were barged down the Nile to pollinate crops, Rick pointed out there were no pesticides and genetically modified organism (GMO) crops.  He looks at the combination of those three factors – GMOs, pesticides and placing hives in monocultures - as culprits in the Colony Collapse Disorder that is killing bees, and said Colony Collapse particularly impacts commercial varietal honeys, where the bees are transported around the country and are often fed high fructose corn syrup in between flights.

 “In winter, I don’t visit the hives at all,” he said. “When the snow is off the ground, I’ll check them out. I tend to be more cautious – I try not to get into a hive until it’s roughly 60 degrees out. “And I tend to trust the bees,” he added. “I don’t know what a very good bee larva looks like – I’m not a bee. I think the bees know what a good bee is to breed a queen from.”

Rick said every beekeeper finds a comfort level. “In bee school, they said that if you ask a question to 12 beekeepers, you get 13 answers,” he said. The Kennedys have found that comfort level, keeping things as natural as possible and leaving the bees to their own devices. They also make their honey by the older method of crushing and straining, rather than extracting it.

“We crush the honeycomb and let it drain through a filter,” he explained. “There’s a lot less air contact that way.” While Rick acknowledges that modern commercial orchards can’t be operated without spraying, they can use bee-safe chemicals and avoid pesticides when the flowers are on the trees. That’s what he looks for when finding a host site for his hives.
“We try to keep it as natural as we can,” he said.

The Kennedys sell honey in several sizes, from 3/8 of a pound to 3 pounds, and Lynda makes her all-natural beeswax candles in several shapes, featuring 100 percent cotton wicks.

They sell only at Farmers Markets – in Raymond, Epping and Hampton Falls - and to friends and from their website, www.kenne-bees.com. They also offer a hive hosting program to broaden the genetic spread of their bees.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

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New Hampshire Bee Keepers Club


More Links of Interest

Fruit Pest Update:
603-862-3763

Integrated Pest Management

Fruits and Vegetables

Plant Diagnostic Lab

Bug ID

For Homeowners: Education Center and Information Hotline

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and employer. UNH, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture and New Hampshire counties cooperating.
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