Farmers market remains open, makes adjustments during pandemic

Market attendees are advised to utilize social distancing and to only touch what one plans to buy.

Posted: Mar 28, 2020 6:21 PM
Updated: Mar 28, 2020 6:23 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The Lane County Farmers Market, recognized as a grocery store by the City of Eugene, will remain open on Saturdays.

Their highest priority is to keep the community safe, and they plan to operate in a way that allows attendees to shop locally.

The market issued a safety plan for how they plan to proceed, after the Executive Order was issued by Governor Brown.

The first hour of the farmers market is reserved for individuals over the age of 60 and those in high-risk groups.

Patricia Rogers Garcia is the founder of Salsa Garcia, the owner of an authentic Mexican salsa brand. She has a booth at the Lane County Farmers Market every Saturday and said that serious precautions are being taken.

Garcia said she brings gloves to the market, keeps her sanitizer close and even has a washing station.

“Everybody has to stay six feet apart from each other, and they’re not able to touch my products,” Garcia said. “I hand the product to them.”

Garcia said that while the Winter Market is slower, she has still seen a steady flow of community members who come out to shop.

“It’s nice to be outside," Garcia said. "I know everybody is supposed to stay at home but I think that from what I hear it’s better to be outdoors than in a confined area when you go shopping.”

Vendors are spaced out to allow shoppers to keep their distance. The farmers market has provided a foot-activated handwashing station. For vendors who are ill, cancellation fees are waived.

The community is highly advised to practice social distancing and to only touch what they plan to buy. They are also advised not to show up if they have any symptoms or have been exposed to someone with symptoms.

Eugene resident Larry Null said that he and his wife have been doing their best to connect with friends and family over the phone. Today’s market allowed them to get some fresh air.

“We’ve been stuck at home for the last two weeks just dying to get out and get some fresh produce and be out with some people finally,” Null said. 

The Lane County Farmers Market will remain open Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more information on the steps the market is taking, click here.

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