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No matter where I travel, I’m always drawn to farmers’ markets. Somehow it makes me feel more connected to the place I’m visiting, and it’s always interesting to see the different varieties of fruits and vegetables that are grown throughout the world.
With the exception of the few locals who have small garden plots in their backyards, there are no major growers on Ambergris Caye itself—everything is imported from the mainland or from neighboring countries. Unlike the US, where there are many redundancies within the agricultural community, Belize farmers are very specialized. There is a “guy” who grows tomatoes, a “guy” who raises chickens, a “guy” whose specialty is pineapples, and so on. (Please note that my use of “guy” does not imply that “gals” are not also growers.) Of course this doesn’t bode well for buyers when there is a bad crop year, but at least they know exactly where their food is coming from.
Most fruit stands we visited were stocked with star fruit, papayas, oranges, grapefruit, pineapples, peanuts, plantains, and many other vegetables. And these urban hubs are quite popular, too. We learned quickly that supplies dwindle by mid to late afternoon, so the earlier the better.
It can be difficult to eat well when traveling, and farm stands are a great way to explore healthy, local foods.