Farmers Markets Are Back in Chicago After Record Sales in 2020
Many vendors managed to wrest success from the many disruptions and limited capacity brought on by the pandemic
Last year, the COVID-19 pandemic transformed the shopping experience at Chicago-area farmers markets, and as the 2021 season kicked off this month, vendors and organizers will continue to employ safe shopping standards. As restrictions on outdoor events ease, markets hope to sustain the high interest in local agriculture that led to record sales in 2020.
The crisis pushed the start of the 2020 season to June as markets made operational plans that placed safety at the forefront. Organizers required masks and set up entrance checkpoints with one-way traffic. They maintained tight capacity limits, prohibited eating and drinking on site, and canceled special events. There were no chef demonstrations, kids’ activities, or live music. Shoppers waited in long lines at the entrances and booths and couldn’t touch or select their own produce. Yet despite these restrictions and stripped-down amenities, the markets thrived. Read more HERE