Vote for Your Favorite Farmers’ Market

Voting is under way for the 2011 America’s Favorite Farmers Market contest, sponsored by American Farmland Trust.

Fresh fruit at a farmers' market.

Fresh fruit at a farmers' market.

iStockphoto.com/Joe Biafore

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Your local farmers’ market may be one of the contestants in the 2011 America’s Favorite Farmers Markets contest hosted each year by American Farmland Trust.

American Farmland Trust (AFT) has opened the voting to select “America’s Favorite Farmers Markets” at the organization’s website. The online contest is a nationwide challenge to see which of America’s farmers’ markets can rally the most support from their communities. At the end of the contest on August 31, one large, medium, small and boutique-sized farmers’ market will win the title of “America’s Favorite Farmers Market” for 2011. Winners will be featured on Epicurious.com, the most award-winning foodsite, and will be honored at local celebrations where they will receive prize packages from American Farmland Trust and its partners.

Farmers’ markets are a vital link between local farms and their supporting communities, providing fresh and healthy food and an experience that cannot be matched anywhere else. By partnering with farmers’ market managers, American Farmland Trust is encouraging consumers to consider the importance of farmland and to support local farmers. Market shoppers can cast their vote in support of their region’s farmers, community and market. To vote for a favorite local market,simply go to the website.

“The America’s Favorite Farmers Markets contest is a fun and engaging way for farmers’ market shoppers to show their pride for their local farmers’ markets and to directly support their communities,” says Jon Scholl, president of American Farmland Trust. “Farmers’ markets provide a vital connection from town and city centers to surrounding local farms, supplying fresh and healthy food and an experience that cannot be matched anywhere else.”

The America’s Favorite Farmers Contest is a part of American Farmland Trust’s No Farms No Food® campaign, which raises awareness of the dangers of farmland loss by making connections to food. Farms near metropolitan areas produce 91 percent of the nation’s market value of fruit, 78 percent of vegetables, and 67 percent of dairy products.

American Farmland Trust is the nation’s leading conservation organization dedicated to saving America’s farm and ranch land, promoting environmentally sound farming practices and supporting a sustainable future for farms. Since its founding in 1980 by a group of farmers and citizens concerned about the rapid loss of farmland to development, AFT has helped save more than 3 million of acres of farmland and led the way for the adoption of conservation practices on millions more.

AFT’s national office is located in Washington, D.C. For more information, visit American Farmland Trust’s website or call 202-331-7300.