The Cotton Mill Farmers Market is celebrating its 19th anniversary in 2020. The market is open every Saturday from 9-11 a.m. during the winter and 8 a.m.-12 p.m. during the summer in Carrollton, GA. The market is comprised of approximately 17 vendors, although many vendors fluctuate throughout the seasons depending on their products.
One thing that makes the market stand out from other farmers markets is the variety of vendors and all products are locally grown. There are many types of meat and produce vendors such as Dennis Farms, C & L Farm Grows, and Four Bellies Farm. Many vendors here offer unique products such as tinctures, soaps, jams, local art and tote bags.
“I was the first vendor 19 years ago,” said Wendy Crager of Crager-Hager Farms. “The Farmers Market has not changed a lot over the years. It is like a breathing entity. There were three vendors that first day and then it grew to 10-15 vendors. It is always smaller in the winter. “We always seem to have a cheese vendor, a meat vendor, a vegetable vendor, and a bread vendor. It has changed over the years, but it is pretty remarkable.”
Crager-Hager Farms is one of the few farms at the market whose products are certifiably organic. Becoming certified organic is a difficult and expensive process.
“We grow over 100 varieties of fruits and vegetables, as well as eggs on their 120-year-old farm in northern Carroll County,” Crager says.
Married couple Greg and Janie Dennis of Dennis Farms have been vendors for nine years at the market and specialize in grass-fed beef and lamb.
“We raise our cows, sheep, and pigs in a natural pastoral environment, never giving growth-promoting antibiotics, hormones, or steroids. We believe that contented animals produce a superior product, so we strive for a low-stress environment emphasizing the humane treatment of our livestock,” Greg Dennis says. “We follow a strict grass-fed protocol with our cows and sheep never feeding grain, animal byproducts or feed supplements. Our pigs graze the pasture along with the cows and sheep receiving supplemental grain as needed.”
Dennis Farms’ most popular products include Primeburger, which is whole cow ground beef, hot and mild breakfast sausage, bratwurst, Italian sausage, bacon, and ground lamb.
“We do an array of herbal botanicals, so about 95% of all ingredients are grown by us or wildcrafted,” Sam Martin of Cradleboard Creations says. “We do everything from tea blends, bath soaks, tinctures, stuff for colds, face masks, oils, and more. We also have essential oil still in North Georgia, so we do hydrosols as well.”
All the products featured at the market are locally grown or sourced within 50 miles of Carrollton. The market is a great way for the Carrollton community to come together and support a local business that contributes to the abundance of talent that Carrollton has to offer.