There are more than 75 farmers markets operating now in more than 60 Nebraska cities and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is hoping four new postage stamps will help keep those farmers markets on people’s minds.
“A lot of folks have talked about the benefits of farmers markets and that’s certainly true. This postage stamp will give us the opportunity to focus on those benefits,” Vilsack said at a recent ceremony at a farmers market near the White House to celebrate the release of the stamps.
He says the stamps are coming out at a great time, as farmers markets are very popular these days.
“We’ve seen a dramatic increase in farmers markets across the United States, a 76% increase,” Vilsack said. “Today, we have over 8,268 markets throughout the United States.”
According to state records, the number of farmers markets in Nebraska has grown from 39 to more than 75 in the past 12 years. The number of farmers selling their produce at a farmers market has grown from only 78 a dozen years ago to more than 600.
The artist who created the stamps is Robin Moline of Lakeland, Minnesota. The stamps feature images of fruits, vegetables, eggs, cheese, baked goods and cut flowers.
“They show some of what you can get there and the freshness and the spirit of the market,” Moline said. “They’re a community gathering spot. They’re a wonderful place to get good, fresh food, and you get to meet your farmers.”
The new farmers market stamps are on sale now and are “Forever” stamps, good for whatever the price may be for a first class letter, which is currently 49-cents.