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Filed under: Food Week 2010, Menu Planning & Cooking, Special Theme Weeks, Traveling Tips

Buying Fresh Food on the Road

December 9, 2010 by · 2 Comments 


mixed fresh fruit and vegetablesBuying fresh food on the road can be challenging. Most of us want to buy the best and most nutritious food for our families, at a price we can afford. Fresh produce from the local farmers market, fresh seafood from the local fish market and good restaurants are everywhere, but how do we find them when in a strange place?

Local farmers markets are fairly easy to find. And, nothing beats a farmers market for fresh except right of the plant. Most Local Farmers Markets, in the United States, can be found on the geographical search provided by the United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Marketing Service. This site is a great resource and extremely user friendly.

How about buying fish? With the all the worries about pollutants and mercury levels how do you know which fish are safe from one region to the next? The Monterey Bay Aquarium provides a pocket guide for each region of the USA. You can download the guide at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Website. I carry the “Seafood Watch” card in my purse all the time. I find it very helpful even in my home town.

For those that are looking for a good restaurant in a new city, I recommend checking out the parking lots. If the local firefighters, police, ambulance drivers or construction workers are dinning there, the food is most likely very good.  People in those occupations tend to dine out a lot. So, they usually know the best places to go without spending your whole paycheck on one meal.

Buying fresh food on the road when you don’t have the time to hit the Local Farmers Market is only a smile and a question away. If you want to know which local grocery store has the best produce or the best meat counter, don’t be afraid to ask a local on the street. I have found that most people are friendly and helpful when given the opportunity to share their opinion.

Enjoy your trip and I hope you find buying fresh food on the road to be a fun extension of your vacation experience.


2 Responses to “Buying Fresh Food on the Road”
  1. Hoby says:

    RA, One of the things we appreciate the most at a campground is when the owners/managers and staff are familiar with the local markets and restaurants because we want to find the local stuff. There is nothing more frustrating than having the employees/workers at a campground not even able to tell you the closest grocery store and the only restaurant they can name is Burger King or a chain like Chili’s. We always enjoy the local markets, especially the open air markets where the vendors have their vehicles pulled right up to their booths. The internet has sure made it a lot easier to find places, but many of the small vendors are not “online.”

  2. RA Manseau says:

    Hoby, Thanks for that input. I agree it is great when the campground staff will share knowledge about the area. Personally, I am often between campgrounds when I am out and about. And, I am a planner so knowing the locations and times of the farmers markets I will be near is helpful to me. But, don’t get me wrong I can pull off the road for an unscheduled stop with the best of them! Which is why I take my laptop camping! :-)

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