I'm following up to my 3 week old post on the UC Irvine farmer's market. Finally got back there this weekend, so here's what I found.
I wasn't certain if the market managers enforce the rules that vendors produce what they sell. This was based on a couple of items that I thought didn't grow in So Cal: sugarcane and peanuts. After speking with the vendors in question, sugarcane is grown in Fallbrook, and the peanuts are grown locally, too. I forgot to ask where the peanuts are from.
As of 3 weeks ago, I ran into vendors that sold mediocre strawberries in cartons from what appeared to be the same industrial farms. Maybe I'm wrong on this point - perhaps the vendors did grow their own. No matter - I still wouldn't buy flavorless berries, so maybe it's a moot point whether the rules of certified markets are enforced.
Dave - the peanut vendor told me the season here starts in October and ended earlier this spring. From this, I guess you can look forward to a bowl of boiled peanuts over football season.
Two vendors who grow sugarcane were alrady out by the time I got there - they will have more next week if anyone cares.
Early cherries made an appearance in a big way this weekend. The ones i tasted weren't that sweet or flavorful, but I suspect that'll change in the next few weeks as the Bings and Rainiers make it to market.