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Thursday, March 30, 2023

This is the second part in a series about the best locations to buy your food in Gainesville. Click here if you missed the first part. 

We’re in the middle of summer and the warm season crops in full swing. Here’s a sample of what you might find at Alachua county farmers markets this week.


• Fruits: blackberries, citrus, melons and tomatoes

• Herbs (such as basil, mint and rosemary)

• Vegetables: Broccoli, eggplant, garlic, okra, onions, peas, peppers, potatoes, sprouts and squash

• Pecans

You may also find other local products such as:

• Artisan cheese

• Breads, pastries and baked goods

• Coffee

• Eggs

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• Handmade soap

• Honey

• Handmade jewelry

• Juice

• Live plants

• Locally raised and wild caught meat (seafood, hog, bison, beef, water buffalo, chicken, gator, rabbit and others)

• Olive oil

• Pre-prepared foods

• Wildflower and farmed bouquets

• Woodwork

During the first part of this series I wrote about the most popular farmers markets in Gainesville. In this second part of the series I’m going to discuss two places that the average shopper may have never been to. These two gems are the Haile Farmers Market and the Citizens Co-op.

Haile Farmers Market

The Haile Farmers Market is every Saturday from 8:30 a.m. until 12 p.m. rain or shine. The market is located in Haile Plantation Village off Tower Road.

Started in 1998, the Haile Farmers Market is a small market. However, this small market carries one of the largest varieties of local goods. Everything from crafts to fresh crops, this weekly market hosts over ten farms and over a dozen other merchants.

One of the most unique features of this market is the location. It is small, and easy to navigate on foot. It is located in the middle of the Haile Plantation Village, near all the unique local businesses.

Local tip #1: Get there early and stay for breakfast, brunch or lunch at one of the delicious local restaurants in Haile Plantation Village such as Sisters or Haile Village Bistro,

Citizens Co-op

The Citizens Co-op is a full-service grocery story open Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The store is located downtown on Main Street, next door to the Civic Media Center.

The co-op is essentially as close to a farmers market as a consumer can get daily. Citizens Co-op operates on a Local First Policy, sourcing from local producers first and supplementing elsewhere when necessary.

The co-op offers natural products of local, organic, kosher, gluten-free or vegan varieties. The store also offers some products in bulk.

The store is open to the public, however costumers with a Consumer Membership to the co-op get access to member sales and other benefits.

Citizens Co-op is unique as it offers local products from all across Gainesville.

Here are some interesting local products:

• Sweetwater coffee

• Baked goods from Flour Pot Bakery

• Micanopy Maiden Kombocha

• Satchel’s dressing.

• Falafel King

• Tempo Bistro To-Go

Local tip #2: Bring your own bag or box for your groceries. You’re saving the environment by eliminating the use of plastic bags, and reducing business operating costs.

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