Food, clothing, shelter - the most basic human needs. As such, they are also fundamental building blocks for a community. A sustainable approach to food production and consumption is critical for the health of a community and its people. The local food movement helps keep our community healthy by making fresh food accessible to more people and by giving people a place to socialize at area markets.
Chattanooga boasts having the region's largest outdoor market supporting local food and crafts - the Chattanooga Market. In a recent national poll by the American Farmland Trust,
the Chattanooga Market was voted #1 in the State of Tennessee, #1 in the South and #8 in the Nation in the large market category.
Representing over 5,000 acres of local and regional farms as well as over 200 vendors, the Chattanooga Market is the region's largest producer-only market. Each Sunday, thousands of area residents partake in this Chattanooga tradition – with some events drawing up to 30,000 people.
Gaining Ground awarded one of its first-round grants to support the continued development of Chattanooga’s Main Street Farmers’ Market. Held every Wednesday, this market is Chattanooga’s only farmer-owned market. The Main Street Market brings fresh, local food to one of downtown Chattanooga’s transitional neighborhoods. Its location has created something of a crossroads, bringing neighborhood residents, downtown workers and farmers together to celebrate local food and to catch-up on local events.
Whether you enjoy the liveliness of the Chattanooga Market, the camaraderie of the Main Street Farmers' Market, or the intimate nature of the Brainerd Farmers' Market, farmers markets bring us together and help build stronger communities.