Whether you live in San Joaquin County or are just visiting the area, the abundance of fresh food is one thing that no one should miss. An imported storebought tomato just doesn't compare to a juicy, homegrown summertime Big Boy available from a local family farm. And why buy asparagus shipped in from somewhere else when the Delta region produces so much of the vegetable that there is an entire festival celebrating its yearly harvest?
But it's not just fruit and vegetebles that make the local region special. Local farms also sell fresh eggs. Tim Barsetti, an owner of Barsetti Farms in Galt, describes country-farmed eggs to have a tougher shell and better flavor than most eggs available in the store.
"It's because they're natural eggs," Barsetti said. "We feed them grain instead of all the commercial food."
Ralph Lucchetti and his family have owned The Fruit Bowl on Waterloo Road for more than 63 years. Their main product is peaches — in 55 varieties. While the business stays busy with numerous locally-grown items, they also run a bake shop. Still, his favorite part is the people who continue to come in and shop.
"My favorite part is meeting all the people," he said. "Most (customers) have been coming here for a number of years."
16925 N. Highway 88, Lodi
209-931-3876 for Spanish speakers
Hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day, year-round.
Produce: Grapes, apples, tomatoes, mangoes, cactus, onions, oranges, garbanzo beans.
17405 N. Highway 88, Lockeford
Hours: 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. year round.
Produce: Varies on the season. Asparagus, cherries, strawberries, melons, squash, peppers.
28522 N. Cherokee Lane, Galt
Hours: Call ahead
Biglieri Farms Farm Market
17815 E. Highway 88, Clements
Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., opens in April.
Produce: Walnuts, strawberries, asparagus, yams, tomatoes, cashews, peanuts, almonds.
Buon Giardino Fruit Stand
16220 E. Highway 88, Lockeford
Hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day from May through October
Produce: Cherries, tomatoes, corn, summer squash, green beans, winter squash and pumpkins.
Clements Ridge Produce
23225 Highway 88, Clements
Hours: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the summer, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the winter
Produce: strawberries, fruit or vegetables.other food: Tri-tip sandwiches, pies and a wine tasting room.
6752 E. Main St., Stockton
Hours: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the first and third Saturdays of the month from May to October.
Produce, tours of the walnut grove.
Other activities: Pumpkin patch, green beans, tomatoes available for kids to pick.
Dart Family Ranch
16880 E. Highway 88, Clements
Hours: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Aug. 1 through Nov. 15.
Produce: Seven varieties of apples, walnuts, figs, pears, plums and peaches.
26 W. Stewart Road, Lathrop
Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Oct. 3 through Oct. 31
Produce: Pumpkin picking, Indian corn
Other activities: Corn maze, hay ride and scarecrow contest.
Highway 88 and Brandt Road, Lodi
Hours: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day in the summer
Produce: Strawberries, green onions and snow peas.
Lo Wa Saetern
15671 Lower Sacramento Road, Lodi
Hours: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day from April to June.
Produce: Strawberries and blackberries.
Phillips Farms at Michael David Winery
4580 W. Highway 12, Lodi
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays in the summer, 5:30 p.m. on weekends; close at 4:30 during winter.
Produce: Delta asparagus, beans, bing cherries, peaches, butternut squash, heirloom tomatoes, broccoli and sweet corn.
Other activities: Tour the winery by appointment, taste wine or eat at the cafe.
S&R Egg Ranch
10710 E. Collier Road, Acampo
Hours: 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. Saturday year-round
Produce: Fresh eggs and asparagus.
The Fruit Bowl
8767 E. Highway 88/ E. Waterloo Road, Stockton
Hours: In summer, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day. Call or check Web sites for fall and winter hours.
Produce: 55 varieties of peaches, nectarines, plums, pluots, summer squash, green beans and tomatoes.