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Published August 05, 2010, 09:53 AM

Farmers Markets Make Big Strides in Minnesota

National statistics show that farmers markets are making big strides in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

By: Associated Press, WDAZ

MILWAUKEE (AP) - National statistics show that farmers markets are making big strides in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture tallied farmers markets across the nation.

It found that Wisconsin had 204 operational farmers markets this year. That was eighth-best in the nation. California was No. 1 with 580.

The USDA also found that the number of farmers markets in Minnesota grew 61 percent this year compared to last year. That ranked No. 2 in the nation, behind Missouri at 77 percent.

Farmers markets are markets where produce growers sell locally grown fruits and vegetables directly to the public.

The USDA says the number of farmers markets across the nation grew 16 percent this year.

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