A new year is upon us, and this year Pacific Coast Farmers' Market Association celebrates 25 years of bringing you fresh California produce to certified farmers markets in your neighborhood, delivered directly from farmer to you.

Celebrate with us as we offer special anniversary events at your market.

Right now there is fabulous citrus available, just in time to keep all those winter colds at bay. Loaded with vitamin C and antioxidants, it's a tasty way to prevent illness.

Diaz Farms and Aoyama Farms will have navel oranges, tangerines, blood oranges, kumquats, lemons, grapefruit and pomelos at their booths. J&J Ramos Farm also has a nice variety of juicy citrus.

Farm-fresh eggs are here at Great Valley Poultry for a little protein in your diet. Nunez Farm and Halog Farm have very fresh vegetables like spinach, cauliflower, beets, broccoli, onions, carrots and more for fiber and other nutrients. And Bistro Blends has good-for-you olive oils and balsamic vinegars that make any salad or marinade taste great.

There are delectable whole grain and whole wheat breads at Michelle's Golden Brown Breads, and sweet local honey from Diablo Creek Apiary.

Fontana Farms has wonderful jams and sauces made with fresh fruits and spices. They also have delicious omega 3-rich nuts for snacking.

And don't forget to de-stress this month after a busy holiday season with some soothing handmade soaps from Delta Moon Soapworks. Bouquets of fresh cut flowers at Ochoa Nursery or a gorgeous orchid from Rose Mae Orchids will brighten your day.

There's nothing more important to your health this year than getting lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains and fiber into your diet, and the farmers market is the place to go for all good things local.

So eat healthy! And come help us celebrate 25 years of serving the community with fresh produce, fun events and great music. See you at the market!

Farmers markets are open rain or shine.

  • The Concord farmers market is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays, year-round, at Todos Santos Plaza, at Willow Pass Road and Grant Street. The market, from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursdays, is closed for the season.

  • The Clayton farmers market, from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays, on Diablo Street between Main and Center streets, is closed for the season.

    Visit www.pcfma.com or call 800-949-FARM (800-949-3276).

    The Time is Ripe is written by Vince Scalise and Debra Morris. Contact them at mrcarrot@pcfma.com.

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