Grocery shopping can be such a mundane and overwhelming task, especially with kids in tow. Add in the task of price comparisons and it becomes one of my most dreaded chores every week.
One of my new favorite places to shop these days is Freshfields Farm. Our Jacksonville location just opened up in November of 2013 and they have another location in the Orlando area. First off, it’s important to note that Freshfields Farm is “not a supermarket” and they proudly proclaim that right on their website. To me it seems like a combination between grocery store and farmers market. They carry meat, seafood, produce, and dairy items. And that’s all. If you’re looking for processed “convenience foods” like cereals, chips, and tv dinners, then Freshfields Farm is not the place for you. But if you want fresh meat, fruits, and veggies from local farmers this is a great place to check out. You can also find things like dry beans, nuts, and honey. There’s so much to explore and to choose from.
As far as produce goes, you’ll find a huge selection of fruits and vegetables from both local Florida farmers and national suppliers. They have your “standard” selections, as well as organics and more exotic items. The prices are generally a bit cheaper than other stores in the area…especially on organic picks. And in a lot of cases, the quality seems to be much better. On previous trips I’ve found beautiful plump strawberries and blueberries, as well as some of the biggest juiciest mangoes I’ve ever seen. They also have selections that make it really easy to enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables without a lot of the work. Don’t feel like cutting up a whole squash or pineapple on your own? No problem. They sell some of their produce already halved or cut up for you, so it’s more convenient to just take it home, unwrap, and eat. They also sell fresh peanut butter made right in-house. Yum!
The meat selection at Freshfields Farm is just as extensive and appealing. They carry a lot of selections from national brands along with a huge amount of options under their own Freshfields Farm label. According to their website, nearly all of the meat, seafood, and chicken that they receive daily is hand-cut and packaged right in store on the day that it comes in. If you want a certain cut of meat, there are always lots of friendly employees available to help you out. And just like their produce, the prices of their meat selections seems to be much less that other stores in the area. Freshfields Farms is a great place to go if you like to stockpile meat and freeze it to use later! They also have a pretty wide selection of deli meats and dairy products such as eggs and cheese, all at pretty good prices.
For me, every trip to Freshfields Farms is an adventure. There is so much to choose from and with such minimal packaging, everything is really visually appealing. The employees are friendly and helpful. Plus the kids love it. To them, our trips to Freshfields Farm are an adventure. I mean, the place looks like a barn and has a bright green John Deere tractor parked out front. What kid wouldn’t love that? Oh, and did I mention the Ice Cream Shoppe right outside? Yep, ice cream and awesome fresh groceries all in the same place! How can you go wrong?
For this review we welcome a member of our own JRR family: Rhonda Kovar is a former call center manager turned stay-at-home mom. She grew up in the heart of North Carolina and moved to Florida after getting hitched in 2002. She is a graduate of Lenoir-Rhyne University and a lover of all things crafty, musical, or edible. Rhonda loves finding new and delicious ways to turn her two tiny picky eaters into future foodies.