Until 2011, it was difficult for Harlem residents to get fresh-from-the-farm fruits and vegetables without heading much farther downtown. But with the advent of the 125th Street Farmers’ Market, every Tuesday is market day at the State Office Building, at 125th and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. The New York Fresh Connect Farmers’ Market Program—a statewide initiative begun by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to increase access to New York farm products—helped to make it happen.
Among the farmers and artisans at the market are Nevins Farm, from Pleasant Valley, with honey, nuts, dried food, and seasonings; Breezy Hill Orchard’s eggs, poultry, apples, and cider; fruits, veggies, and herbs from Staten Island’s El Poblano farm; herbs and edible plants offered by Brooklyn’s Urban Green Eco Technology; as well as several vendors with prepared sweet treats and other prepared foods (like Caribbean jerk chicken).
Nutrition and cooking workshops are offered at the market, as are free events like the 2013 concert by the New Orleans–style Nathan Warner and the Sugartone Brass Band.
Chefs such as The Red Rooster’s Marcus Samuelsson are regulars. After picking up some chard from Migliorelli Farm’s stand in June, Samuelsson blogged, “The market opens this week, and I wasn’t about to miss it.”