About the Market
The Menands Market, officially known as the Capital District Cooperative, Inc., was created in 1933 by 530 Capital District Growers. An organization committee representing the Capital District Growers developed a comprehensive plan for a new Regional Market to serve the needs of Eastern New York.
The plan was based on studies made of the market needs of Albany and the Capital District over a 16-year period by the following agencies:
- The Albany County Farm Bureau (1916-1932)
- The Albany Market Gardeners' Cooperative Association, Inc. (1918-1932)
- The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (1921-1932)
- The Albany City Administration (1924-1925)
- The Albany Chamber of Commerce (1924-1931)
- The New York State Agricultural College (1929-1931)
The plan provided for the creation of a new wholesale food-handling district in Menands. The site, 381 Broadway, was chosen for a number of reasons: proximity to the then recently opened Menands Bridge, easy access to the D&H Railroad and also its closeness to the centers of Troy, Watervliet, Cohoes and Albany, and it was considered the hub of the Capital District.
The main emphasis of this newly created modern farmer's market was on providing a place designed where a large quantity and wide variety of produce, locally and non-locally grown could be made available to stores, shops, restaurants and food processors at a competitive price. Additionally, it also provided a means of concentrating buyers and sellers from the entire Capital District at one point, establishing healthy competition amongst sellers under free market conditions.
Over the years, the Capital District Farmer's Market has continued to provide sellers and buyers the same benefit as it did when established in 1933. The launching of this project marked a new era in food distribution in the Capital District. Today the Market still provides the community with a large quantity and variety of fresh locally-grown produce at competitive prices.
For growers - the market provides stalls for all that can be rented by the year, month or day and stalls may be held from year to year when rented on an annual basis. For buyers - the market provides a large quantity and variety of fresh locally-grown produce to select from with a competitive price. For the Capital District - the bounty is in abundance at our market. Why should our neighbors go to a grocery store for pink, cottony, tasteless tomatoes and seed-heavy squash that have traveled in from who knows where over many miles when you can get them here, fresh from our own local soil? The community, shoppers and restaurants can buy exquisite tomatoes, tender baby squash, fragrant herbs, tender lettuces and organic produce. After visiting our farmers market you will never want to purchase or eat supermarket-bought produce again.
Plan for the Future
The Capital District Farmers Market in Menands is a traditionally organized terminal wholesale market that has not substantially changed–until recently. We are beginning a physical plant preservation and enhancement project that will improve signage, building refinishing and pavement condition which will improve its appeal. We will be opening the market to new vendors, the general public, artists and entertainers on Saturdays so that our community can participate in our mission and enjoy not only the fresh produce, but also the entertainment and artisans as well. We are applying for grants to assist with this plan from various funding streams. The Village of Menands is very supportive and provides conceptual and ongoing involvement with improving the Capital District Farmers Market in Menands.
For more information, for questions or to help with our mission, please contact The Capital District Farmers Market in Menands at (518) 465-1023.