With the Mission Community Market opening on Thursday, we talked with Brie Mazurek, communications director for CUESA, the nonprofit that runs the market, about what shoppers can expect.

The short answer is that it won’t be as freewheeling as it was last year, but there will be plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as some take-away options for dinner.

The market remains on 22nd Street between Bartlett and Mission streets. It will open at 3 p.m. and end at 7 p.m.  So far, no hour has been set aside for seniors, but Mazurek recommended that seniors come early when the market is quieter.  

ML: How many vendors will be there?
Mazurek: For opening day, we’ll have about 15 farm and food vendors, including long-time favorites like Yerena Farms, Blue House Farm, Twin Girls Farm and Happy Boy Farms. Spring is here, which means blueberries from Triple Delight, and Gotelli Farms will be bringing the first cherries of the season. You can see the full lineup here.
 
ML: You run other markets around the city, and what are you finding in terms of the waiting time on lines?
Mazurek: We’ve been putting new protocols in place at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market to ensure a safe experience for shoppers and vendors, which means, yes, there will be lines. Vendors are now setting up their booths to be full service to minimize food handling. It’s best to come with your shopping list in hand so you can shop quickly, but be prepared to wait your turn.
Please wear a face covering, stand six feet apart, and be patient — we’re all in this together! We will also have handwashing stations (thanks to our neighbors at The Make Out Room for water access!). Here are some more tips for shopping the market.
 
ML: Are there any items I could preorder?
Mazurek: Not at this time.
 
BM: Could I preorder a produce box?
Mazurek: We are hoping to offer fresh produce boxes at the market in the future, but for now, we recommend that you pre-order a box from Oya Organics and pick it up at Reem’s (25th and Mission) on Wednesdays. Support two amazing women-owned businesses at once!
 
ML: Is it advisable to bring children?
Mazurek: While the Mission Community Market is known as a family gathering space and children are always welcome, we are encouraging families to send a single household member to shop, if possible, to facilitate social distancing. But for some, that is impossible. So, when bringing children, please make sure they stay by your side.  CUESA’s children’s activities at the market are on hiatus during this time.
 
ML:  Will vendors accept food stamps? Apple Pay? Credit cards or should I bring cash?
Mazurek: Yes, absolutely. CalFresh/EBT (food stamp) recipients can visit the CUESA Info Booth to redeem benefits to buy food in the farmers market. CalFresh benefits are also matched up to $10 to spend on fresh fruits and veggies through our Market Match program. That’s twice as much produce for each CalFresh dollar! And yes, most of our vendors take credit cards and/or Apple Pay for contactless payment.
 
ML: Will there be any vendors selling prepared food to take-away for dinner?
Mazurek: Yes, Mi Comedor will have tasty tacos, RoliRoti will have rotisserie chicken and porchetta sandwiches, and Nuchas will have Argentine empanadas — all ready to go and eat off site.
 
ML: Will there be live music?
Mazurek: Due to restrictions around essential business, there will be no live music for the time being, but we look forward to the time when we can bring back our local musicians.