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Baltimore produce to get a boost at the new Lexington Market

By
Keith Loria

When it comes to food, Baltimore is probably best known for its seafood, especially crabs, but it also is a home to a vibrant produce business. As Maryland’s biggest city, Baltimore is key to the state’s agriculture business. Vegetable growing totals nearly 30,000 acres in Maryland, with sweet corn comprising more than 8,000 of those acres, followed by watermelon at more than 3,700 acres. Fruit accounts for more than 4,000 acres with apples leading the way with almost 1,800 acres.

Some big news that is happening in Baltimore is the September opening of the new Lexington Market, located on Lexington Street. For more than two centuries, the Lexington Market has been a renowned Baltimore destination where people can buy food, including produce, from area small businesses. The new market’s design offers upper and lower areas, which are connected by a grand stairway that is lined with seating, and which is being described as “Baltimore’s biggest stoop.” The upper floor will feature prepared foods and specialty vendors selling treats such as baked goods, ice cream and coffee. The lower market will the place where people buy fresh foods, including produce.

The new market is also making good use out of the space in between the new and old buildings, which will be the home to an outdoor plaza that will include extensive space for outdoor seating, public events and community gatherings.

The new design will transform Lexington Street into a pedestrian-only plaza and will also bring much-needed urban green space to the area. The goal is to provide a safe and welcoming place where the people of Baltimore can shop and have fun.

The team behind the market is a founding member of the Post 114 coalition, a partnership between the government, private sector, community representatives, and nonprofits that is addressing the challenges and opportunities concerning the environment and safety around Lexington Market.

Also popular in Baltimore and its surrounding communities are farmers markets, and these local events offer foodies all sorts of delicious goods, not just produce, but also specialty coffees, fresh breads, and artisanal cheeses. While summer is the key season for these markets, many are open in the fall, and some are open for business year-round.

The city’s largest market, the Baltimore Farmers’ Market, is being held Sunday mornings until Jan. 29, 2023. Managed by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts, which supports and promotes arts and culture in the city, the Baltimore Farmers’ Market plays an important role in providing people in the city an opportunity to buy healthy fresh foods while supporting local growers.

As the fall arrives, produce markets in the Baltimore area are sure to be offering fresh Maryland-grown produce, including items like peppers, cantaloupes, plums, blackberries, grapes, raspberries and winter squash, which will be in season through mid-September. Watermelon will be available until early October. Fall produce will be available throughout the season.

A healthy and crop of local Maryland fruits and vegetables, along with individuals who are dedicated to providing the people of Baltimore with access to those goods, have helped make Baltimore a bustling hub for produce.

Photo: The Lexington Market’s design offers upper and lower areas, which are connected by a grand stairway that is lined with seating, and which is being described as “Baltimore’s biggest stoop.”

Keith Loria

Keith Loria

About Keith Loria  |  email

A graduate of the University of Miami, Keith Loria is a D.C.-based award-winning journalist who has been writing for major publications for close to 20 years on topics as diverse as real estate, food and sports. He started his career with the Associated Press and has held high editorial positions at magazines aimed at healthcare, sports and technology. When not busy writing, he can be found enjoying time with his wife, Patricia, and two daughters, Jordan and Cassidy.

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