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Beaumont Farmers Market remains open despite pandemic

Sellers said business is still booming despite the pandemic's negative economic impact. The market was able to stay open throughout quarantine since it is outdoors.

The Beaumont Farmers Market is still selling local produce throughout the coronavirus pandemic while taking precautions. 

Sellers said their business is mostly still booming despite COVID-19's negative impact on some businesses. The market was able to stay open throughout quarantine this spring since it is outdoors. 

"It's been great, it's been real good," Signature Blends vendor Harold Lewis said. "We sell out every weekend."

Lewis said he has been coming to the market for the last two years. He sells spices and seasonings with Jaylen Lewis, founder of Signature Blends and owner of the food truck Unick Eat'z

"As you can see, we call it hella good," he said. "We're bold with our name and we stand with our product."

The open air market meets under the pavilion at the Beaumont Athletic Complex on College Street from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. every Saturday, rain or shine, unless there is a hurricane in the Gulf. 

"We've definitely lost some customers, I think there's a lot of customers that don't like having to wear a mask," coffee roaster Miles Hall said. "There were times during peak when we had to limit how many people can come in here, but we really have continued to sell here."

"We don't have as many vendors, as we had, but this is the time of the year when a lot of the produce is no longer in season," he said. "But we still serve quite a few customers."

Hall said he started roasting coffee more than 12 years ago when he was craving a particular flavor and someone told him to roast his own beans. He is a retired biology professor with a love for Latin American coffee. 

All of his coffee blends are medium roast, but he said he can do dark roast if a customer asks for it. 

"I can roast about six pounds at a time, and I'm roasting about 30 bags of coffee to sell here every week," he said. 

Hall said he only buys coffee from small farmers. 

"I buy from vendors that buy directly from the farmers," he said. "Coffees are all grown with rainforest friendly sustainable methods, usually certified organic. These are farms that normally would not have the opportunity to sell to a larger market than whatever they can sell locally."

Sellers at the Beaumont Farmers Market ask that you do not touch produce or preserves before buying them, stick to one person at each table at a time, stay 6 feet apart from other customers, and do not linger in the market. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, dogs are not currently allowed at the market. 

The organizers encourage cashless payments to reduce contact between sellers and customers.  

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