Charleston’s original year round farmers market, the Johns Island Farmers Market, begins January 5th for its sixth year of operation every Saturday from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm. The market is easily found on the beautiful campus of Charleston Collegiate School, 2024 Academy Drive, Johns Island, SC 29455, just off of Plowground Road, a mile from Maybank Highway.
Patrons can look forward to a joy filled experience with over 50 new and returning farmers, a variety of artisans, food trucks, music, and offerings for all ages. The variety of goods that can be found at JIFM are top notch in quality, trustworthiness, and sure to fill many shopping lists before going elsewhere.
JIFM is proud to be the only farmers market in our local region upholding a Truth and Transparency campaign which guarantees that all produce, foods, and handmade goods are honest about how/where they are grown or made. The goal of this market is to create a trustworthy, enriching experience for customers and for them to know that the background work is being done to ensure that everything sold here is legitimately local, sustainable, and labeled correctly. This does not occur at any other Charleston area farmers market.
Market owners and operators Frasier Block and Blue Laughters visit the farms and businesses of all vendors at JIFM, carefully documenting and asking questions to ensure the legitimacy of all items being sold at the market. Weekly vendor booth checks for proper signage and quality of goods reinforces an honest message for customers. If there is something not right about the way a vendor is operating, they will be asked to leave the market. “If we do not trust a vendor, how can we in good conscious have them there selling to our customers? Fraud is all too common at other markets, so we are taking a stand to ensure that no customer will not be tricked or lied to at JIFM.” says Block, “It is our passion for this market to be an honest one because people deserve the truth about local products and to understand what is in season. We believe in doing the right thing and make it a priority to listen to all of our vendors and customers in creating a wonderful market experience.”
In light of research being done in many areas around the globe on fraud at farmers markets, the owners of JIFM emulate markets and policies that are doing the right thing. This is not something that South Carolina currently has any legal regulations for, as does California. Produce and goods from around the world are sold at the SC State Farmers Market/Food Hub in Columbia, where any “farmer” can buy and resell to customers under false pretenses. Here are some links to research found on farmers market fraud:
- Farmers Market Lies Exposed, CBC News, https://youtu.be/YYwB63YslbA, http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/farmers-markets-lies-marketplace- 1.4306231
- Fighting Farmers Market Fraud, The Lempert Report, https://youtu.be/4IYkHaR0DwE
- Farmers Market Lies, A Joel Grover Investigation, https://youtu.be/Mm1DkTlyrGQ
- Fraud In the Market, Farmers Market Coalition, https://farmersmarketcoalition.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Fraud-in- the-Market-Wiseman_vol_26_2.pdf
- Farm Confessional, Modern Farmer, https://modernfarmer.com/2014/09/farm-confessional-sold-non-local- produce-farmers-market/
- Faux Farmer Ends Up In Hall of Shame, https://youtu.be/7k8d2xmYdEA
Along with truth and transparency in local shopping, the Johns Island Farmers Market has many other unique offerings. It’s location at the Charleston Collegiate School campus offers amenities such as ample safe, free parking, a game pavilion, and pleasant oak tree-covered areas that are pet friendly. Multiple breakfast, lunch, coffee, tea, and drink options along with comfortable seating areas, cozy fire pits, a kids play zone, and musical entertainment make the Johns Island Farmers Market a true local loving place to experience each Saturday. Join us all year long, every Saturday starting January 5th from 9:30 am – 1:30 pm at 2024 Academy Drive to see what sets this market apart from the rest.
JIFM is currently calling out to all local growers and creators who would like a chance to reach the community through an honest outlet. The market has weekly, bi-weekly, and drop in spaces available all year, so please email [email protected] to request a 2019 vendor application.
For more information regarding Johns Island Farmers Market, please visit Website: www.johnsislandfarmersmarket.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/johnsislandfarmersmarket/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/johnsislandfarmersmarket/
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