Photo courtesy hubcityfm.com
Spartanburg’s Hub City Farmers Market has a mission to increase the supply of healthy local food in Spartanburg. It is the longest running farmers market in the Upstate area and is open every Saturday, April through December, as well as the third Saturday of January, February and March. To support local farmers in the Spartanburg and Upstate Area, the Hub City Farmers Market only works with local businesses and has only local-producer vendors. The market sells goods and commodities ranging from soaps to eggs to greens. The market recently started doing internships and has brought a lot of people interested in farming and agriculture to the Northside of Spartanburg, where they have a large garden consisting of several acres.
Co-sponsor of Envirothon, Robert Wilder, thinks farmers markets are a great addition to the community as they provide fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables while also providing things to do for people interested in agriculture.
“Farmers markets allow the consumer to connect with the farmers in the community. The farmers will be able to tell people how the produce was grown, were fertilizers and pesticides used, of so, what kind. People can get a better appreciation for what goes into getting the product to market. It also allows farmers to have more control over the prices they get for their produce,” Wilder said.
Sean Abbott (12) will be attending Clemson University next year to study agriculture. Abbott has done different types of work for farmers and is familiar with fresh produce markets in Spartanburg.
“I was considering applying for the interns’ program last spring at the market. The hours are from 9 to 2 and they pay around $1600 for the eight-week period. I didn’t get the job because of Covid-19, but I do often work for a farmer named Paul Callahan who sells the produce from his farm in Wellford there on Saturdays,” Abbott said.
Interning and helping out at the Hub City Farmers Market helps to bring nutritious food to the Northside of Spartanburg where there aren’t many healthy options.
“The Spartanburg farmers market brings fresh produce to an area of the city that does not have large chain grocery stores close by and by doing so, helps reduce the food desert that exists there,” Wilder said. “The internships allow young people to investigate the work skills and knowledge base required to be successful in the local agricultural business. It is also a way to get involved in community service, which is needed everywhere.”