FOLEY, Ala. (WALA) - The Foley Farmers and Fishermen’s Market is taking shape and is scheduled to open in just over a month. The market will feature the diversity of Baldwin County produce and local seafood. Rain has hampered construction somewhat, but officials still hopeful it will stay on schedule.
Foley city officials hope the site on County Road 20 between Highway 59 and the Foley Beach Express will soon be a thriving marketplace. Once completed, the open air facility will boast 30 stalls with power and utilities. Unlike a typical farmers market, the Foley Farmers and Fishermen’s Market will offer even more diversity.
“This area has the ability to produce food so with that, that’s our resource and so we’re going to utilize it all together as a food movement, really,” explained Market Director Heather Pritchard.
Several local farmers have already jumped on board. Fourth generation farmer Michelle Forland of Forland Family Farm was selling her goods at Loxley Farm Market Friday, August 23. She can’t wait to open up shop in Foley.
“It’s very exciting. It gives us another opportunity to have another outlet to sell our things and also gives the community a chance to get to know where the things, the fruits and vegetables, the seafood and how it’s grown - where it comes from,” Forland said.
Seafood is one notable difference Foley’s market will offer. Another is the diversity of produce; not just variety, but how it’s grown. Micah Craine of Craine Creek Farms in Loxley has been selling his hydroponic lettuce to local restaurants for some time. Soon, you’ll be able to buy it at the market.
“I’ll probably have a display to show the different ways I grow hydroponically,” Craine said. “Like, this is an NFT system and there’s different types of systems. I’ll probably display those.”
Machinery at the Foley Farmers and Fishermen’s Market sat idle again Friday because of all the wet weather, but organizers said despite that, they expect to open on time.
“We are on schedule. Now granted, we can’t control the weather so I can’t say an opening date today, but we’re still headed toward October 1,” Pritchard said.
The city of Foley acquired initial funding for the project through a grant from BP, totaling $313,000. They are continuing to look for more funding to cover the yearly operational cost of the market which could be as much as $900,000.
Pritchard said there is still room for more vendors and more information can be found on the City of Foley’s website.
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