Farmers Back at Eastern Market: Shop Fresh Tuesdays

Eastern Market Farmer's Line Granted Waiver

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A farmer is pictured on the Eastern Market Farmer's Line. Photo: A. Lightman

According to the DC Coronavirus website, the Eastern Market Farmer’s Market (225 Seventh St. SE) has been granted a waiver to operate.

That means the Fresh Tuesdays market will be able to operate as well as the weekend farmer’s line, but with modified hours.

The Farmer’s market has been granted a waiver to open on Tuesday, April 14 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday, April 18 from 9 a.m. to 1 pm; and Sunday, April 19 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

It appears compost collection will also be offered this weekend.

The government imposed the requirement that farmer’s markets receive a waiver from DC Government to operate to indicate that markets have implemented approved social distancing and protocol in consideration of the COVID-19 outbreak.

While other farmers markets got the waiver in time to open last weekend, including Market SW (425 M St. SW) and the FRESHFARM Markets on H Street And in Brookland, the Eastern Market Farmer’s Market did not open Saturday, April 12. Eastern Market was closed for Easter on Sunday, April 13.

Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee (EMCAC) Chair Donna Scheeder welcomed news that the farmer’s market would open again.

“I’m very happy that the situation got resolved, and the Eastern market can join all the other farmers markets in Washington DC in order to provide the freshest food to all of those who need to shop,” she said.

Mayor Muriel Bowser removed farmer’s markets from the list of essential businesses and made the requirement for a waiver in a Mayor’s Order issued Wednesday. Bowser said the changes were necessary to protect the District’s food supply chain and the District’s frontline food workers during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) public health emergency. The order was effective as of 12:01 a.m. Thursday, April 9.

To get a waiver, a market manager must submit a plan to the District food policy team outlining how they will operate and enforce social distancing protocols, and that plan must be approved by District government.

The Eastern Market South Hall fresh food merchants continue to operate from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday under new conditions. Remember to wear a mask and practice social distancing when you shop at any food seller in the District.

A list of approved markets is updating on coronavirus.dc.gov