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03/09/2016

Farmers Can Market Local Products to Consumers through Turnpike Plaza Markets

Turnpike locations bring toll road bring a taste of Pennsylvania to toll-road travelers April through November

Harrisburg, PA - Growers have an opportunity to market their fresh, local produce to travelers along the state’s busiest highway by signing up with the Pennsylvania Turnpike Plaza Farmers’ Market program.

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission organize farm markets at the Allentown Service Plaza in Lehigh County, Sideling Hill Service Plaza in Fulton County and New Stanton Service Plaza in Westmoreland County. Markets are open April 1 through November 30.

“Our nation’s first superhighway is a very unique market opportunity for Pennsylvania’s growers, with more than 525,000 drivers on the turnpike every day,” said Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. “This is a chance to offer them a fresh taste of Pennsylvania agriculture for snacks or even to prepare for dinner, all without having to leave the toll road.”

Markets open rain or shine at 10 a.m. on Saturdays, Mondays and holiday weekends, and at 11 a.m. on Fridays and Sundays. They close at dusk.

In order to participate, at least half of the stand’s gross sales must be products grown or produced in Pennsylvania. Value-added items like canned goods, candles, soaps, preserves and baked pies may not exceed 25 percent of sales. There is no fee for participation.

“The Pa. Turnpike has teamed up with local farmers for more than 20 years to provide travelers with fresh produce and quality foods,” said Turnpike Public Relations Director, Carl DeFebo. “We encourage our customers to take advantage of this unique offering at selected service plazas and support local farmers.”

Farmers who want to sell products at the service plaza farmers markets should contact Ashlee O. Dugan at asdugan@pa.gov or call 717-705-9511.

For more information, visit www.agriculture.pa.gov and search “turnpike.”

MEDIA CONTACT: Brandi Hunter-Davenport - 717-787-5085

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