Front Page of the Martinsburg Journal- INWOOD - From the orchards to the shelves, the Taylor family knows farming. So when the opportunity arose to open a farmer's market in Inwood, the decision was easy
Taylor's Farm Market opened May 29, occupying the former Inwood Farmers Market, after winning the bid proposal through the West Virginia Department of Agriculture, which owns the property and facility.
"We saw a need for a farm market at this end of the county. We just want this to be a happy place where people feel welcome and want to come," said Ryan Taylor.According to Ryan, his dad, Bob, has been farming since he was a child and always dreamed of opening a farmers market in Inwood. When the WVDA put the space up for bid in February 2013 with the stipulation that the location remain a farmers market, the Taylor family knew it was the right time to make Bob's, and the family's, dream a reality.
"I want people to come into the market and enjoy it and be able to leave with a good feeling, to be treated right - whether they bought anything or not - and to want to come back. I want it to be a friendly place," Bob said.
To visually reintroduce the farmers market to the public, the Taylors spent several months renovating the facility, from painting the building's exterior to enlarging the market section of the interior by removing a wall and repainting the floors.
In determining what products to stock in the market, the family felt it was important to offer West Virginia-made products. About 40 percent of the store comprised of state goods.
While stating that offering state-made products can make the experience more personal for shoppers, Ryan said it also becomes more personal as a business.
"We're trying to keep the market as much from West Virginia as possible. You don't really realize how many people make stuff and grow stuff in West Virginia. You get used to going to the supermarkets and looking at stuff, but there's a story behind every person," Ryan said.
"We sell a microbrewery beer from Mountain State Brewing Company, and they're two stepbrothers who got into it together. I think that's pretty cool. Everyone you come across has a background and a story, and it makes me feel better as a person here to sell other people's products made in West Virginia," he said.
Taylor's Farm Market offers fruits, vegetables, baked goods, dairy products, sauces, salsa, wines, beer, soap, honey and meats. The store also offers certified organic products.
An open house will be held at Taylor's Farm Market at 9 a.m. Saturday to reintroduce the public to the farmers market. The event will include a wine tasting and vendor sampling.
The facility contains approximately 11,975 square feet of retail space and 20,625 square feet of cold storage space, which the family rents. Not all of the available space is being utilized, but Ryan said depending on the first year of business, the market may expand, although no plans have been made.
Taylor's Farm Market is located at 178 Pilgrim St. and can be contacted at 304-400-6123 orwww.facebook.com/taylorsfarmmarket. The market is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.
- Staff writer Samantha Cronk can be reached at 304-263-8931, ext. 132, or twitter.com/scronkJN.