FARMERS MARKETS: THE PERFECT MARRIAGE OF RETAIL AND RESTAURANTS
Kimco CEO Conor Flynn said it himself; the localized shopping movement will continue to grow in popularity in 2016. And community marketplaces, such as farmers markets, are exactly the one-stop shops for local food and products that consumers are looking for. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the number of farmers markets in America has increased by 68 percent over the last 15 years, from 5,000 markets in 2008 to 8,411 in 2015.
It’s the overall farmers market atmosphere, where shoppers can interact with a cheesemonger and a honey producer in one place, that creates a unique and enjoyable shopping experience. Farmers markets give consumers the opportunity to a put a face to the brand—which is sometimes lost at traditional retail food outlets—while fulfilling their desire to shop locally.
Most farmers markets operate on a seasonal basis to reflect the region’s agriculture and harvesting. Other neighborhoods, similarly, host pop-up markets. However, there are also indoor year-round markets that offer consumers the same shopping experience with a wider variety of purveyors. Let’s take a closer look at two that standout in Kimco’s portfolio.
Union Market Tustin
If you live in Southern California or are traveling to the area, you’ll want to make a stop at The District @ Tustin Legacy, a site that we own in a joint venture partnership with Vestar. Here, you’ll find Union Market Tustin, a farmers market concept combing retail and restaurants under one roof. It’s the first of its kind in Orange County.
The 20,000-square-foot market opened nearly a year ago. It’s now full of individual, specialty purveyors offering everything from flavored sea salt and handmade leather moccasins, to uniquely crafted cocktails by famed Los Angeles mixologist Andrew Parish. Many of the vendors are one-of-a-kind independent business owners you can’t find anywhere else.
The Drinkbar Juicery is Orange County’s local juice bar specializing in organic, cold-pressed, and small-batch juices, acai bowls, and cleanses.
With University of California, Irvine close by, Union Market caters to the young, free-spirited shopper looking for somewhere unique to eat, drink, and shop. But the market also hosts promotional events that cater to locals of all ages, including Wine Wednesdays, whiskey tastings, cooking demos, and days where children eat for free. Follow Union Market Tustin on Facebook for deals, a look at the market’s treats, and other happenings.
The Kroft offers an array of market-inspired sandwiches and poutines, Canadian-French specialty fries.
Ardmore Farmers Market
Head to Ardmore, Pennsylvania and you’ll find the Ardmore Farmers Market—a hallmark of Kimco’s Suburban Square shopping center for years. It houses 16 local purveyors, ranging from florists, to bakers, to Philadelphia’s well-known Di Bruno Bros. Other favorites include Stoltzfus Meats, Ardmore Seafood, and Saxbys Coffee.
The market draws local crowds with tastings, specialty foods from surrounding rural counties, and events to benefit local schools and well-known community events like the Devon Horse Show. Check out Suburban Square’s Facebook page for the latest on the Ardmore Farmers Market.
Samples at the Ardmore Farmers Market Sip, Sample, & Serve event to benefit Silver Springs-Martin Luther School.
Union Market Tustin and the Ardmore Farmers Market are perfect examples of gathering places that bring consumers together to eat, drink, shop, and play—all while supporting their local community. Stop by the markets and let us know which vendors catch your eye!