Volunteer Gleaners needed for summertime farmers’ markets!

lettuceHappy June! Gleaning has begun at the summertime farmers’ markets and Seacoast Eat Local is looking for volunteers to help collect fresh produce from our generous farmers at the end of the market day.

We are looking for volunteers to commit to a month (or longer, up to the entire season) of gleaning at a particular farmers’ market. This entails coming to market (and it can be a market you already attend so you can do your shopping and volunteer all in one trip), walking around the market near closing time and asking vendors for donations (they are expecting this). We then inventory what is collected for donation, and deliver it to a food pantry (we can suggest one or you can choose!).

Please email Shelly if you have any questions, or to signup for any of the following markets:

Durham: 5:30pm Mondays, June-September
Dover: 5:30pm Wednesdays, June-September
Rochester: 5:30pm Tuesdays, June-September
Somersworth: 5:30pm Mondays, June-September
Exeter: 5:30pm Thursdays, June-October
Portsmouth: 12:30pm Saturdays, June-October
Kittery: 1:30pm Sundays, June-September

The time listed is the approximate time you would need to be at market by to glean before closing. This is a great learning experience for children as well, so feel free to bring yours along!

Thanks for ALL your help and we look forward to seeing you at markets!


Jill Hall and Shelly Smith

Top 10 Reasons to Shop at a Farmers’ Market

By Caitlin Porter, Seacoast Eat Local Intern

Tomatoes by Caitlin Porter


1. Fresh produce that is in season

Produce that is in season has better flavor, as well as more nutrition. Farmers’ markets carry a wide variety of fruits and vegetables that are at their peak ripeness.

2. Varieties not at the grocery store

Certain types of fruits and vegetables that you see at that farmers’ market aren’t always on the grocery store shelves. Expand your horizons!

3. Farmers have great tips on how to prepare

Farmers’ often have great recipes and ideas on how to prepare vegetables that may seem unfamiliar.

Turnips, photo by Caitlin Porter

4. Use your SNAP benefits!

With the acceptance of EBT cards, now everyone can appreciate what the market has to offer. With our Market Match program, as well as Close the Gap starting this week on the 24th, we help make the market cost effective.


5. Fresh produce is high in antioxidants

Antioxidants are your body’s defense against cancer and damage. Local fruits and vegetables have higher levels since they are much more fresh.


6. High variety of fruits and vegetables

Different colors and types of produce means a wide variety of vitamins and minerals to support a healthy diet.

Wake Robin Farm vegetables, photo by Caitlin Porter

7. Fun family activity

People of all ages love to stroll around the farmers’ market. It is a great way to get outside and spend some time with the family.


8. Eco-friendly

Local food means less shipping and packaging waste, therefore protecting our environment.


9. Support local farmers

Local farmers often only receive a very small percentage of the cost as profit. By shopping directly from the farmers you improve the profit to keep local farms alive.


 10Better animal treatment

Meat, eggs, and milk at the market come from farms where the animals are allowed to roam freely, fed the highest quality diet, and given a much better life than the companies that mass produce these products




Cuesa’s 10 reasons to support farmers markets
Nutrition.gov farmers markets
USDA farmers markets
Mother Earth Living top 1o

SNAP comes to the Durham Farmers’ Market!

by Dyanna Smith, Seacoast Growers Association (SGA)

Happy Shoppers at the Durham Farmers' Market at the Churchill Rink lot in Jackson Landing
Happy Shoppers at the Durham Farmers’ Market at the Churchill Rink lot in Jackson Landing

Get ready for the freshest local produce, prepared foods and beautiful handmade goods to return in June with the start of the Seacoast Growers Association’s Durham and Dover Farmers’ Markets.

Monday, June 1, the Durham Farmers’ Market opens in its location at Jackson Landing across from Churchill Rink. The market will run every Monday, rain or shine, from 2:15-6pm until October 5.

Wednesday, June 3, the Dover Farmers’ Market starts up again in the Chamber of Commerce lot at the corner of Central Avenue and 6th Street. The Dover Farmers’ Market will be open every Wednesday from 2:15-6pm until October 7.

This season, Seacoast Eat Local adds SNAP/EBT services to the Seacoast Growers’ Association’s Durham Farmers’ Market. The program, enables low income customers to use their SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits to buy locally grown foods directly from the farmers and food producers at the farmers markets.

“We’re thrilled to be partnering with the Seacoast Growers Association to bring our SNAP/EBT farmers market program to the Durham market this summer,” Sara Zoe Patterson, Board Chair for Seacoast Eat Local, explains. “Our community’s health is improved when customers buy fresh fruits and vegetables, and it benefits the economic viability of local farms.”

Farm fresh asparagus is in season now at the Seacoast Growers Association markets
Farm fresh asparagus is in season now at the Seacoast Growers Association markets

Market customers can also take advantage of the debit service, which acts like an onsite ATM, adding another layer of convenience to the farmers’ market experience.

Find out what’s in season, who will be at market, and what products are available by visiting the SGA website at www.seacoastgrowers.org. Interactive market maps and a product search feature help plan ahead for weekly shopping. To find out about musical guests and special events, check out the home page calendar or sign up to receive the weekly farmers’ market email newsletter.

The Seacoast Growers Association manages four area outdoor farmers’ markets in Portsmouth, Exeter, Durham and Dover. All markets welcome SNAP/EBT customers.

Maine Scale Sealing (Certification) with State Inspector, April 28

Scale Sealing (Certification) with State Inspector
Location: McDougal Orchards, 201 Hanson Ridge Rd., Springvale, ME 04083
Date: Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Time: 8 am – 11 am (possibly to noon, if needed)

Michael Caldero of the Maine State office of Weights and Measures will certify the accuracy of your scales at this event. Please RSVP to McDougal Orchards, 324-5054, or mcdorch@gwi.net, to indicate when you can arrive with your scale(s.) Be sure to have your scale calibrated ahead of time; the inspector certifies the accuracy of the scale, but doesn’t do calibrations.

March is National Nutrition Month!

March is National Nutrition Month®!
Written by Emily Whitmore, Seacoast Eat Local Intern

National Nutrition Month® is a national campaign that aims to educate and provide awareness to the public on the importance of nutrition and living a healthy lifestyle. It was created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which is the leading organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy was founded by a group of women during World War I as a way to keep track of government food. Today, the organization has expanded to 75,000 members ranging from a variety of professionals including Registered Dietitians, Nutritionists and even students, all dedicated to promoting good health throughout our country.

The academy named “Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle” as the overlying theme of 2015’s National Nutrition Month®. This returns to the concept of combining physical activity and making informed, lower calorie food choices to reduce the risk of chronic disease, maintain a healthy body weight and promote overall health.

Two food groups that are nutrient dense and support Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle are fruits and vegetables. The farmers’ market has some fruit and a HUGE variety of vegetables available ranging from greens, carrots, potatoes, kohlrabi, beets, apples and much more!


If you’re trying to determine what types of nutrients are contained in each fruit or vegetable, a helpful hint is in the color! Those that are alike in color often contain similar nutrient profiles. Here are some of the nutrients that may be found in each:

Pink/Red (beets, radishes, red bell peppers, tomatoes, apples)

  • Beta-carotene
  • Phytochemicals
  • Lycopene
  • Anthocyanin

Orange (carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash)

  • Beta carotene
  • Vitamin C

Yellow (yellow bell peppers, squash)

  • Potassium
  • Manganese
  • Vitamin A

Green (kale, spinach, micro-greens)

  • Fiber
  • Vitamins A, C, K
  • Folate

Purple (eggplant, purple cabbage, purple carrots)

  • Flavanoids

White (cauliflower, potatoes, onions)

  • Lignans


Another goal of Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle is to increase the consumption of whole grains versus refined grains. The market provides whole grain options such as bread and pastas from The Canterbury Bread Shop and Valicenti Pasta!

Fresh pastas made with whole grains
Fresh pastas made with whole grains

Other whole grains you may find include locally grown wheat berries and Brookford Farm whole-wheat flour. All whole grain options are high in fiber and may help reduce risk of heart disease.


Whole grains are part of healthy well-rounded diet
Whole grains are part of healthy well-rounded diet

Healthy protein sources are also an important component of eating a healthy balanced diet. There are a huge variety of lean proteins available at the winter market such as grass-fed or pastured meats including beef, bison, lamb and chicken. Beans, lentils, cheese and eggs are also excellent protein sources that can be found at the market.

So jump into National Nutrition Month® by stocking up on your favorite fruit, vegetables, whole grains and protein from the next Seacoast Eat Local Winter Market!

For more information or interactive games and quizzes, check out the official website for National Nutrition Month® at www.nationalnutritionmonth.org


Photo Credits:


Grass-fed Meats Offered at the Winter Farmers’ Markets

Written by Emily Whitmore
Seacoast Eat Local Intern                           


The Seacoast Eat Local farmers’ markets are loaded with many varieties of high quality protein, including grass-fed meats. Protein is an essential part of our diet and is a vital nutrient used to build and repair tissues in the body. When we think of protein, a few sources that typically come to mind include beef, pork, fish and poultry. There are many different management methods when it comes to raising livestock, and today we will discuss the difference between grass-fed and grain-fed meats.

Grass-fed meats, whether beef, bison, or elk are jam packed with flavor. But the difference between grass-fed and corn-fed meats go well beyond taste profiles. Since childhood we’ve been taught that eating lots of greens can be very beneficial for our health, and this holds true for livestock as well! Cows are ruminants and herbivores, who thrive on high quality pasture and hay. One hundred percent grass-fed meats come from livestock that consumed only grass from beginning to end, with no corn or grain supplement at any point during their growth.

http://www.crossfittsac.com/archives/1734 and
http://www.crossfittsac.com/archives/1734 and

This grass-only diet is reflected in the meat which is considered lean, and is lower in total fat and calories. Saturated fats are of particular concern when consuming meats because they can raise cholesterol levels which can increase risk of heart disease. However, grassfed meats are lower in these saturated fats when compared to grain-fed livestock. Grassfed meats have also been shown to contain a higher content of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). CLA is a fatty acid that has been shown to have cancer prevention benefits. Grass-fed meats are also higher in omega-3s, which are fatty acids that decrease triglyceride levels in the blood and have been shown to be beneficial for cardiovascular health. Another health benefit includes higher amounts of essential vitamins A and E. These vitamins are necessary in vision health, growth and development, and heart and brain disease prevention. Despite the health benefits, making sure to stick to healthy serving sizes of protein is essential for good health. The recommended portion sizes for lean meat, poultry and fish according to the American Heart Association is 3 oz.



Not only does grassfed meat prove to be beneficial for eaters, but in general the livestock benefit as well. By definition, grass-fed livestock have to have access to pasture and open spaces, meaning that they are not confined to small, overcrowded feedlots. As a result they can experience less stress, which can lead to reduced amounts of disease.

Now that you’re an expert on grassfed meats, pick some up for yourself from the Bison Project, New Roots Farm or Velvet Pastures Elk Ranch at this week’s Pick Your Protein Market! And even if meat isn’t your thing, don’t panic! The market also has plenty vegetarian sources of protein available such as eggs, beans and lentils. Come support our farmers and snag some beans or soybeans from Baer’s Best Farm and some free-range eggs from White Cedar or White Gate Farms!







Help share the harvest!


This holiday season, make a donation to help seacoast farmers share the harvest with neighbors in need! Join our Locally Drive Food Drive!

Participating Seacoast Farms have pledged to match produce in-kind for all all funds raised.

This means that every dollar raised goes directly to a local farmer, who in-turn will donate TWICE that value in fresh, healthy produce to a local food pantry.

Seacoast Eat Local will collect the produce at the Winter Farmers’ Markets in Rollinsford and Exeter.

Many participating farms are already donating high quality produce to local food pantries and soup kitchens. This fundraiser provides a direct way of giving something back to the farms for the good hard work that is already happening…and providing incentive for EVEN MORE fresh, healthy food going to people in need.

Donate online or directly at the market. Our next markets in Rollinsford are on Saturday Dec. 6th and 20th. The next Exeter market is Saturday Dec. 13. Visit our Winter Market site for details. Be sure to stop by the Seacoast Eat Local Market Information Table to find out more.


Winter Farmers’ Market this Saturday in Rollinsford

Winter Farmers’ Market November 22, 10am – 2pm
Wentworth Greenhouses, Rollinsford, NH


We’re celebrating Food, Family and Gratitude at the first market of the winter season, featuring locally grown foods perfect for the next big meal with friends and family. You can stock up on squash, potatoes, carrots, and all the ingredients you need for your upcoming Thanksgiving feast. Pick up Maine cranberries from the Seacoast Eat Local table to add an awesome local flair to any meal!

We’re grateful to you for being part of these farmers’ markets and we’re grateful to farmers for their hard work feeding us all. Share the news with your family and invite your friends. Join us this Saturday for the opening market of the season!

recipesGet inspired with recipes! 
Eating with the seasons is delicious and easy when you can pick up so many different things all in one beautiful location.  Recipe cards are available at the market info table and we add more ideas to our Pinterest page all the time. Get inspired and find a new dish or learn a new way to enjoy an old favorite! Share your favorite recipes with us and share ours with your friends and family!

Check everything on your shopping list at the Winter Market! 

Apples, Baked Goods, Bee products, Beer, Beans, Beets, Breads, Cabbage, Carrots, Cider, Chocolates, Cheese, Coffee, Eggs, Flour,  Garlic, Ginger, Greens, Herbs, Honey, Jam & Jelly, Kale, Lettuce,  Milk, Maple Syrup, Meats, Oils, Onions, Pasta, Pies, Pickles, Potatoes, Salad greens, Sauces, Soups, Spinach, Squash, Turnips, Yogurt + a Thanksgiving list!

Check out the interactive Market Map to find where all your favorite vendors will be. You can also search for specific items, find out who has them and what markets they are coming to all using our Product Search Feature!

The Winter Farmers’ Markets are just around the corner!

CarrotsJust a month from now Seacoast Eat Local will be bringing back our annual Winter Farmers’ Market series. We are so excited to be working with Wentworth Greenhouse and Exeter High School once more! We’ll be offering 11 markets from November through April. Come on out and bring your friends and family to nourish bodies and minds while supporting the region’s agricultural community and economy.

It can be hard to move on from outdoor summertime markets, but just imagine coming in from the crisp winter air, entering a warm sunny room filled with tables loaded high with fresh vegetables. Piles of carrots, potatoes, shallots and squash are nestled up to local jams, breads and eggs. A variety of New Hampshire musicians will be back to entertain families and friends. With different cooking demonstrations, kids’ activities and market features, each event is a vibrant scene offering an incredible selection of locally produced food.



Market Schedule

Saturdays, 10am-2pm

November 22 – Rollinsford
December 6 – RollinsfordSeacoast women farmers
December 13 – Exeter
December 20 – Rollinsford
January 10 – Exeter
January 24 – Rollinsford
February 14 – Rollinsford
February 28 – Exeter
March 14 – Rollinsford
March 28 – Exeter
April 11 – Exeter

Exeter High School

1 Blue Hawk Drive, Exeter, NH
Route 101 to exit 9, follow route 27 west 1.8 miles.
10am to 2pm

Wentworth Greenhouses

141 Rollins Rd, Rollinsford, NH
1 mile past Red’s Shoe Barn of Dover
10am to 2pm
Rollinsford market hosted in collaboration with Wentworth Greenhouses
Craft Market: Wentworth Greenhouses hosts a Select Winter Crafts Market that takes place simultaneously with the Winter Farmers’ Market, open 9am-2pm

We are continuing to offer the SNAP/EBT token program at our winter markets. SNAP benefits can be used to make purchases at the winter farmers’ markets. SNAP recipients choose how much they would like to spend that day on food purchases. A market staff member will then swipe their EBT card for that amount. The customer is then given wooden tokens, that are used just like cash, and can be used to buy food at the market. Learn More about shopping with SNAP. We will again be offering the Market Match Incentive Program. Up to $10 of funds taken from your EBT card will be matched dollar for dollar to use on purchase of fruits and vegetables.



Please help ensure these markets continue to thrive by sharing the information with your friends, family, coworkers, and community. Download and print a Winter Farmers’ Market poster to hang in your workplace, library, church, coffee shop, or storefront. Willing to hang six or more posters? Send an email to leo@seacoasteatlocal.org and we’ll mail them to you to post around town.

Already excited to start planning your shopping list for the first market? Check out our Product Search feature to see who will be bringing your favorite local foods!

Grow a Row for your local food pantry!


Have a green thumb and a little extra garden space?

New Roots Farm in partnership with Seacoast Eat Local is looking for garden partners to help increase fresh local produce available at our many local pantries. How can YOU help?

Step 1: Pick up free seedlings or seeds available at New Roots Farm in Newmarket this Friday, June 20th from 2-6pm.

Step 2: Plant out your container, row or beds dedicated for donation to a local pantry.

Step 3: Gather your harvest and bring it to a summer farmers’ market in Dover, Exeter or Portsmouth for collection and distribution to local pantries. Alternatively you can coordinate with your own nearby pantry for drop off times available.

Want to learn more? Email leo@seacoasteatlocal.org


During the Winter Market season we were able to collect and donate over 2000 pounds of food to local pantries. Help us continue and expand garentomatoesthese efforts by growing extra produce for donation. You can arrange to donate to a pantry in your neighborhood at your convenience or bring your home grown donations to the Seacoast Eat Local tent at the Dover, Exeter or Portsmouth Farmers’ Markets. We will add it to our gleaned food from the market that day and deliver it to a pantry right after market.

Looking for help with your garden? Be sure to utilize the UNH Cooperative Extension Information Line. You can peruse their online resources or give them a call at 1-877-EXT-GROW (1-877-398-4769).