Farmer's markets across the state say they have had a good season. But, the drought did affect business.
Some venders couldn‘t have harvested their produce as soon as they liked due to the hot and dry weather. Even when July rains brought a later than usual harvest, some customers stayed away. Kristin Krokowski is with the Farmers' Market Association for Wisconsin. She says foot traffic dropped twenty to thirty percent below last year in parts of the state, “There were people who thought there wasn’t’ going to be as much produce for the whole year because we didn’t have it when they expected it, so I think overall attendance in farmers markets and sales in general were down this year.”
That wasn’t the case everywhere in the state. Teri Ouimette is the executive director of the Chippewa Falls farmers market. She says even though farmers were late with their produce, sales were strong. So strong in fact, that some venders wanted the market to stay open a few extra days, “Once it got into the season things were moving, and they were selling a lot of stuff and had grown stuff. We actually had planted to carry it on to the 18th of October but we ended up by the eleventh.”
Farmers' markets across the state say that while the drought did influence what was available, and when, sales were strong and on par with prior years. Some farmers' markets will remain open until early November.