[…] Farm stands were once the only way for people to buy locally grown vegetables and fruits direct from the farmer. Neighbors bought from neighbors to fill in what they didn’t grow in their own gardens.

Today, farm stands and on-farm markets have been joined by an abundance of other choices from farmers markets to community-supported agriculture (CSA) shares from farms in which a member pays upfront before the season starts for a weekly “share” of the farm’s harvest.

The good news, says Shawn Lavigne, farm manager for Paul Mazza’s with farm stand locations in Colchester and Essex, is that “people are craving local and fresh and more people are getting it direct than ever before.”

The challenge for the traditional farm stand has been keeping up with all the other options consumers now have.

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