Farmers MarketImage source: Chris Schrier, Flickr

When Certified Organic Is Not Available, Ask the Right Questions at the Market

Local farm stands, CSAs, and farmers markets give access to some of the freshest and healthiest seasonal food, while providing an opportunity to directly support the people who produce it. Cornucopia always recommends certified organic local farms first, but if one is not available, you can often still find local food that benefits human and environmental health.

Cornucopia’s handy DIY Certification Guide helps market patrons ask farmers the kinds of insightful questions that an organic certifying agent would ask when inspecting an organic farm. The guide helps ensure you are rewarding the most ethical farmers who care for their animals and the land, while bringing home the healthiest food for your family.

Questions detailed in the guide fall under three main categories:

  1. Is it local?
  2. How was it grown?
  3. How was it raised?

Discover the difference between free-range and pastured eggs, the importance of soil health for combating plant diseases, and the differing approaches to animal welfare practices.

Pocket DIY Certification Guide (PDF) *Updated April 2019
Full DIY Certification Guide (PDF) *Updated April 2019
Do-it-Yourself Guide to Choosing The Best Chicken and Turkey (PDF) *Released February 2020
Press Release
USDA’s National Farmers Market Directory

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