The Duke Farmers Market is postponed due to the pandemic, but you can get a bounty of fresh produce through the “Alternative Duke Mobile Farmers Market.”
LIVE FOR LIFE, Duke’s employee wellness program, created the new market to connect the Duke community to some farmers who were going to be part of the 2020 Duke Farmers Market. The farmers market, traditionally held from April to September at the Duke Medicine Pavilion Greenway, is postponed until further notice.
“A lot of us are avoiding the store or going less, meaning we don’t have the same access to fresh produce as we did previously,” said Courtney Brooks, health education specialist for LIVE FOR LIFE and organizer of the mobile market. “Buying from local farmers guarantees you get some fresh and tasty produce and supports the local economy.”
Most vendors participating in the Alternative Mobile Farmers Market offer pick-up of seasonal produce at their farms. Some farmers deliver to certain locations for pick up, and one vendor, The Produce Box, delivers to homes. The season ends in late August.
The vendors are:
- Dandies Farm – Located in Rougemont, Dandies Farm sells corn, melons, squashes, strawberries, mushrooms, a medley of greens and more. Place your orders online and pick up at the farm.
- Lyon Farms – Located in Creedmoor, Lyon Farms allows guests to pick strawberries and sells pre-picked produce like tomatoes, broccoli, cucumbers, sweet potatoes and butter beans at the farm. You can also purchase $20 boxes of produce to pick-up at pop-up locations in Durham, Raleigh and the surrounding area.
- The Produce Box – The Produce Box works with a network of about 100 farms in North Carolina to deliver a box of fresh produce to your home each week.
- Red Birds Farm – Located in Efland, Red Birds Farm sells pasteurized eggs, asparagus, cucumbers, kale and more. Make an appointment to visit the farm to buy produce.
- Toad Hill Farm – Located in Durham, Toad Hill Farm sells a variety of produce, various plants and hand-cut flowers. Join Toad Hill’s email list to see what you can pre-order each week for pick up at the farm.
Bob Alberson, owner of Dandies Farm, is typically busy this time of year preparing produce to sell at Duke’s market. Alberson has been welcoming customers at his farm instead.
“The produce is getting picked and going straight to our cooler,” he said. “It’s not sitting out for hours like it is at the market. Farmers are always committed to providing you the freshest possible product.”