In recognition of the positive contributions Massachusetts\u2019 farmers\u2019 markets have on agriculture and public health in the Commonwealth, Governor Baker has proclaimed August 2-8, 2015 \u201cMassachusetts Farmers\u2019 Market Week.\u201d The weeklong event coincides with the 16th National Farmers\u2019 Market Week as the United States Department of Agriculture celebrates the nation\u0027s thousands of farmers\u2019 markets.\n\n\u201cFarmers\u2019 markets are crucial direct market venues for growers across the Commonwealth and help ensure the continued viability of family farms and local food production,\u201d said Governor Charlie Baker. \u201cI encourage everyone to support Massachusetts\u2019 hard-working farmers by visiting their local farmers\u2019 market this week.\u201d\n\n\u201cNot only do farmers\u2019 markets strengthen the Commonwealth\u2019s vital agricultural industry, they also provide healthy food to our communities,\u201d said Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Matthew Beaton. \u201cThe Baker-Polito Administration is committed to ensuring access to locally-produced, fresh food for all Massachusetts residents.\u201d\n\nMassachusetts\u2019 7,755 farms help to protect over 523,000 acres of open space and produce more than $492 million in agricultural products annually. At nearly $48 million, direct market sales account for 10 percent of the state\u2019s total sales of agricultural products. Massachusetts ranks 5th in the nation for direct market sales and 3rd for direct market sales per operation. \u00a0\u00a0\nThe number of farmers\u2019 markets in Massachusetts continues to grow. In 1987, there were 69 farmers\u2019 markets; today there are approximately 250 summer markets and 40 winter markets. Yesterday, Governor Baker, Secretary Beaton, and Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR) Commissioner John Lebeaux attended the grand opening of the Boston Public Market, a new year-round, locally-sourced market in downtown Boston.\n\u201cWe are proud to recognize the growing popularity and opportunity farmers\u2019 markets have seen in recent years,\u201d said Commissioner Lebeaux. \u201cThe farmers and food producers who make these markets possible and the communities that host them reflect the growing demand of the Buy-Local movement. The variety of farm products and specialty foods found at farmers\u2019 markets is stunning and the quality and craftsmanship from our local farmers and food producers cannot be beat.\u201d\nIn recent years there has been an increase in the number of farmers\u2019 markets accepting Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Of the 250 summer farmers markets, 142 currently accept SNAP.\nDAR compiles an annual list of Massachusetts farmers\u2019 markets, listing days, locations, times, and opening and closing dates for each market. An interactive map of farmers\u2019 markets statewide is available here.