Listings in the National Farmers Market Directory are up 9.6% compared to 2011, representing an increase of 689 markets, according to Kathleen Merrigan, agricultural deputy secretary.
The directory is published online by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Information in the directory is voluntarily provided by farmers market managers. There are 7,864 markets in the 2012 directory.
California boasts the most farmers markets, with 827 in the directory. Other top states in include: New York 647; Massachusetts 313; Michigan 311; Wisconsin 298; Illinois 292; Ohio 264; Pennsylvania 254; Virginia and Iowa tied with 227; and North Carolina 202. Together they account for 49% of the markets in the 2012 directory.
The directory is a searchable database so users can find farmers markets based on name, location, etc. It includes links to Web pages for markets that provided their online addresses.