Penn State Great Valley brings farmers market to corporate park

With a history rooted in agriculture, it comes as no surprise that Penn State would strive to support local farmers as well as nutrition and healthy living. In an effort to return to those roots, Penn State Great Valley has joined forces with Liberty Property Trust to launch the Farmers Market at Great Valley this fall.

Starting Sept. 10, the market will be held at Penn State Great Valley from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Thursday through November. Fresh, seasonal foods ranging from fruits and vegetables to baked goods, sandwiches, salsa and even organic dog biscuits all produced entirely by local farmers and vendors will be available. A variety of gluten-free items will also be sold.

“The corporate park setting is a new concept for markets,” said Yvonne Post, market manager. “People are so busy these days that we need to bring the market to them where they work. The concept is not only convenient for local employees and residents, but also for small farms. By holding the venue during the lunch hours producers can participate without losing an entire day’s work.”

Chester County is second in the state in food production behind Lancaster. Ironically, residents sometimes don’t enjoy local produce such as mushrooms until it has passed through the supply chain and reached the grocery store. Post’s mission is to participate in the creation of a local food system that connects the producers directly with the consumers and provides them with the freshest local products possible.

“Creating a farmers market is like building a community,” said Post, who also manages Anselma Farmers and Artisans Market in Chester Springs. “Our farmers and producers cooperate with each other and truly enjoy talking with customers.”

“Since the market is being held at our graduate campus, it is important that it has an educational component,” said Suzanne Cruit, corporate and community relations manager for Penn State Great Valley. “We will have cooking demonstrations, seasonal recipes and samples, as well as ongoing workshops on topics such as health and nutrition and land preservation.”

The fall market will feature a variety of seasonal produce including red peppers, melons, winter squashes and lettuces, to name a few. Local producers who are interested in participating should e-mail marketatgreatvalley@gmail.com. For more information, visit http://www.pennstategreatvalley.org online.

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Last Updated September 08, 2009