Farmers markets sprouting up around country!

By Erica Quednau | equednau@wcia.com

Published 02/10 2014 06:02PM

Updated 02/10 2014 06:18PM

URBANA -- The way people buy groceries is changing around the U.S. That's because more farmers markets are popping up. According to the National Farmers' Market Directory, last year there were more than 8,000 across the nation. That's a 184% increase since 2000.

But, as you know, farmers markets aren't a new concept in Central Illinois. Urbana's had its Market on the Square for more than 30 years. It's one of the largest in the state.

Staring in May, about 70 vendors set up every Saturday. The director of the market says it's a great way to connect urban living with farming. She's glad to see more starting up.

Besides the number of markets starting, the selection of items is growing too. Cookies, pastries, even jams and dried herbs are all being sold in different locations.

In Urbana, they're allowing packaged sales of beer, wine and spirits at the market this year. It opens May 3.

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