Going Green in Groningen – The Local Market

9 July 2022

You have probably walked or cycled passed the Vismarkt when it was filled with loads of people, colourful stands, seagulls flying over and often the smell of fresh produce and food. Whether you pick up some vegetables for your regular dinner or treat yourself to a nice bouquet of flowers, either way going to the market is very beneficial. Not just for our planet, but also for you! In a world that is rapidly changing due to global warming and the damage we have done to earth, most of us feel hopeless and powerless. That is why we started “Going Green in Grunn” (Groningen), a series in which we give you tips to become more green and sustainable in the city of Groningen (as a student).

One of the easiest and (we think) most fun ways to be a little bit more sustainable is shopping locally. This is possible in many ways. However, the most obvious one is the one we will discuss today in this article, which is going to the local market!

There are three main reasons why going to the market is sustainable and a great thing to do (as a student). 

1. It is good for the environment 

By going to the market where you will be buying local products. This means that the products you have bought didn’t need as much transport as the products you might buy in a bigger, more commercial grocery store. With less transport comes less greenhouse emissions from truck exhaust or jet fuel. Which means, much better for the environment! Another pro is that often by buying your foods at the market there is less plastic use. A lot of products we buy in the bigger grocery stores contain plastic packaging. At the market a lot of the foods and products are displayed in crates without the involvement of plastic. However, we still advice you to bring your own bags so you don’t have to take a plastic one at the stands.

2. You support the local economy 

Not only do you support and stimulate the local economy by going to the market, you also support small (local) businesses. A lot of the stands at the market are local businesses, not just farmers. There are several bakery stands, for example the stand from a tiny grocery store called Le Souk. On top of your support, it kind of goes without saying, but the products and foods at the market are often of higher quality with better taste than the ones from the grocery store. Especially if you like cooking you shouldn’t pass on the spices, fruits and vegetables from the market!

3. It is often cheaper (and fun) for you! 

Not only is the quality and taste of the food better at the market, there are a lot of nice little deals! Of course, the AH bonus is a very nice thing, but at the market you can get a lot for less. Often vegetables and fruits have special prices, also depending on the season. Not only is it fun to pick out your products at the stands, but it can also be cheaper! Our tip, if you have an oven, you can buy a bag filled with yet-to-bake bread at the bakery stand for only 1 euro! Or similarly, at the same stand, 5 donuts for 1 euro. At one of the cheese stands they have 10 eggs, from free range chicken, for 2,50 euro. And there is much more to discover!

So, whether you are actively a climate activist or just a student wanting to help out a little more, going to the local market is a great way for anyone to become a bit more green in Groningen!