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Farmers' Market Proposed in Danvers [POLL]

The prospect of a farmers' market on Pine Street in Danvers was discussed at the most recent Zoning Board of Appeals meeting.

Danvers resident Susan Prentiss went before the ZBA on Dec. 12, proposing to open a private farmers market from her on 141 Pine St., which initially received opposition from local farmers.

Bill Clark of and Peter Gibney of said at the meeting, while they favor a farmers' market run by a community group or nonprofit on town property, the proposal sounds more like a farm stand or retail store, rather than a state-certified farmers' market, the Salem News reported.

According to the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, a farmers' market can have 25 to 30 vendors, accommodate 1,500 customers, and provide coupons to the elderly and those in need of food assistance. The minimum qualifications in the farmers' market qualifications include having two or more farmers primarily selling local products.

"The Prentisses need to be aware there is more to it than simply calling it a farmers' market," Gibney said at the meeting.

According to the Salem News, Prentiss told the board she plans to close her garden center, but keep an existing landscaping business going, and proposed opening a farmers' market on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., with two vendors selling handmade items, fruits, vegetables and homemade breads.

The hearing will be continued, alongside requested opinion from town counsel, at the next  on Jan. 9 at 7 p.m.

helen burns January 05, 2012 at 09:30 PM
A Farmers' Market in Danvers is a great idea - we have been going to other towns, Salem, Beverly and sometimes Gloucester. Ms. Prentiss seems to have a good plan and she should be given permission. Competition is always good for the consumer.
M. M. January 05, 2012 at 10:23 PM
* if the sticking-point is holding it in a public- owned spot why not hold it in the town hall parking lot alongside Essex Street? - - plenty of space, parking and centrally located, weekends would work well too as town hall is closed...
Mark Jones January 06, 2012 at 12:29 AM
I vote yes!
Gary Jones January 06, 2012 at 11:29 AM
Absolutely..If Danvers has a problem with “Farmers Market” call it an “Artisan Market” and sell whatever you want.

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