News 8 Austin covers Waco Farmers Markets.

Wacoans planting the seed for more farmers markets.

News 8 Austin (go to the website to see video report).

By: Bonnie Gonzalez
Under a tent near the fairgrounds in Waco, a few growers gather several times a week for a farmer’s market.

“I think 1973 or 1975 is when it started but they were at a different location,” farmer Thaddeus Wachel said.

Now there is talk about opening a new market in a different location.

Martha Sanders owns a local boutique in uptown Waco. She has organized for a second market to start up at her business on June 4.

Wacoans planting the seed for more farmer's markets

“I do feel Waco is by all means large enough to support two if not even more,” she said. “The farmers have been very receptive and very willing.”

For the shoppers on the hunt for fresh produce, having two markets is good news.

“I believe there’s a demand for it. If there’s going to be a second area, then there’s a demand for it,” shopper Chesley Smith said.

There are plans for even a third market in Downtown Waco. Bethel Erickson with the Heart of Texas Urban Gardening Coalition is involved with the project.

“It’s been kind of a continuing conversation for the past two years both between the World Hunger Relief Farm, the Urban Gardening Coalition and the Waco Chamber of Commerce,” Erickson said.

Erickson said they are currently working on securing a space.

“I think it’s a big strength to be able to develop three, obviously because there are two that are developing so quickly there’s a need here in the community and a desire for local produce and local vendors,” she said.

Erickson said they hope to have the downtown farmer’s market up and running sometime next month.

She also hopes to collaborate with the other markets to recruit farmers and work out a schedule where they wouldn’t have to compete.

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