Mobile Market Offers Fresh Produce To-Go

Pick-up fruits and veggies weekly at Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Partiicpants with the Duke Mobile Farmers Market can expect a variety of produce from local farmers throughout the spring and summer. Photo by Duke Photography.

La'Tosha Dale has a soft spot for sweets - cake and donuts in particular.

But this spring, she's adding more fruit and vegetables to her diet with the help of the Duke Campus Farm and Duke Mobile Farmers Market. She signed up for the first time to take part in "community supported agriculture," or CSA, which is when a customer buys a weekly "share" of produce from a farm.

She picked the Duke Campus Farm and will receive items like cucumbers, snap peas, mustard greens and more. To get her pre-ordered box of produce, she'll swing by the Duke Farmers Market each Friday and be on her way.

"A big part of it is the convenience, but also the fact that I'll get vegetables I typically wouldn't purchase as part of the package," said Dale, a staff assistant at the Institute for Genome Science and Policy. "I've never purchased kale before, and I've had beets, but never bought them, either. Whatever comes in my package, I'll look up recipes and figure out how to use it."

Duke community members can now sign up with a variety of farmers with the Duke Mobile Farmers Market. A dozen farms and vendors offer pick-up between 4 and 6 p.m. each Tuesday at Sarah P. Duke Gardens. Prices start at about $16. The Duke Campus Farm also provides a special option to pick up produce on Fridays at the Duke Farmers Market.

Here's how to sign up for boxes to be picked up each Tuesday at the gardens:

  • Choose a farmer or vendor - Review information to find different products, quantities and prices. 
  • Sign up directly with a farmer or vendor - Contact information is listed online and registration forms are available at each farmer or vendor's website. The forms include how to sign-up and how to make payments.

Some farmers and vendors also offer an added convenience: delivery to home or work addresses.

"We know that people have hectic schedules, which is why it's important for us to provide all sorts of ways for Duke employees to easily get healthy food," said Diana Monroe, health education specialist with LIVE FOR LIFE, which manages the mobile market. "Having fruits and vegetables delivered to you or swinging by the Duke Gardens is an easy commitment to a healthier diet."