The Jersey shore is best known for its beaches and boardwalks, but it hasn’t been nicknamed “The Garden State” for nothing. Agriculture is NJ’s 3rd largest industry. In terms of production nationally, Jersey ranks 3rd in cranberries and bell peppers, 4th in spinach and peaches, 5th in blueberries and cucumbers, 6th in sweet corn, 7th in squash, 8th in tomatoes and snap beans, and 10th in cabbage. There’s even a “Jersey Fresh” label that produce must pass a grading program to receive.
If you’re looking to take advantage of New Jersey’s agricultural splendor, here is a guide to some of the best central and south Jersey shore farmers’ markets. Each has a unique mix of vendors, but all have enough variety to fill any of your shopping needs.
This Sunday farmers’ market has several produce vendors, various bakeries, fish sellers, cheese purveyors, and herb, coffee, and honey specialists. The market has a prime location just blocks away from the 96th Street shopping area, so that you can buy a fancy outfit or fun beach gear while you support local agriculture and provide for your family.
This smaller Saturday farmers’ market – now in its 10th year – is also located near an upscale shopping district, called Kings Highway. You certainly won’t get lost, as there are volunteers that will tell you exactly where specific vendors are. Quite a variety of plants and vegetables.
Live performances make this market seem like a party! Located under the PATCO High-Speed Line and next to the Haddon Ave. shopping strip, the market includes Italian and Latino products, honey, herbs, plants, spices, flowers, tomatoes, and more.
This market on Route 40 takes place just before Cowtown’s weekly rodeo, the oldest in the whole country. Vendors sell fresh meat and cheese, Amish flowers and shrubs, and Western wear. An iconic decorative bull statue adorns the entrance.
This 200 indoor and outdoor flea market on Route 206 spans 200 acres and includes the largest Amish market other than Philadelphia’s. Vendors sell produce, plants, meats, pretzels, flowers, vitamins, herbs, and plenty more.
For more than 70 years, the Berlin Farmers’ Market has turned the town into a suburban paradise. Dozens of vendors sell knick-knacks and Amish, Asian, and Italian foods.
A.C. may not have any actual farms, but its farmers’ market featuring vendors from nearby towns certainly is a must-see. Berries, vegetables, baked goods, and flowers make up just a few of the variety of products the market features.
Vendors for the Stockton Farmers’ Market are so carefully selected that some make the trek from Pennsylvania. Pastured heritage breed meat, fruit, produce, baked goods, pot pies, marmalades, chocolates, fish, barbecue, and artisanal ice cream are some of the most popular products. There’s even a cafe!
This New Brunswick market sells a wide variety of items, including ostrich-derived products like meat, leather, and eggs, pork, goat meat, sauces, pasta, treats, Polish food, and knife-sharpening services.
This highly rated market features both conventional and organic dairy, meat, and produce farms, as well as highly specialized vendors of Asian produce, ketchup, microgreens, crepes, and barbecue sauce.
Located downtown right by the beautiful Somerset County Courthouse, this market includes both regular market items like produce and more unique ones like vegan baked goods and baby food.
This market boasts several vendors who have sold there for almost 70 years since its humble beginning. The market is open most days of the week year-round and has indoor and outdoor sections. Examples of products include crepes, Amish baked goods and meats, the world’s best blueberries, scrapple and pork roll, cider doughnuts, Polish and Mexican groceries, tupperware, and barbecue.
This Flemington market located behind a barn features up to 20 vendors and serves 1,000 customers weekly. Popular products include bread, cheese, and wildflowers.
This recently restored market in Asbury Park features vendors that sell local organic produce, lavender, hot sauces, vegan treats, pickles, and much more!
There are plenty of other Jersey shore farmers’ markets out there (We didn’t even mention any of the ones up north!), so if you don’t see any close to you on this list, don’t fret. With so much Jersey fresh produce, there are enough farmers’ markets to serve every area and food preference.