Business

Farmers markets grow with high-tech advances

With new phone apps and other technology, farmers markets are shifting from a cash-only business, and drawing more customers

At the Dewey Square farmers market in Boston, leafy greens spill out of boxes next to stacks of ruby red cherries. Bundles of deep orange carrots spread across tables. Customers inspect produce, load vegetables into shopping baskets — and whip out smartphones to track the origin of the food they are about to buy.

Technology has come to farmers markets, and it is transforming a cash-only business model that has remained relatively unchanged for centuries. Across the state, these modern-day bazaars are adopting wireless technologies, smartphone apps, and other advances to process electronic payments, promote their wares, and establish virtual markets where customers can buy from dozens of Massachusetts farms over the Internet.

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