Spring has finally sprung! We’ve reached the point when early favourites return to our tables: wild leeks, rhubarb, new crop maple syrup, asparagus, and many, many fresh greens!
Year-round farmers’ markets are shifting outdoors, and most of Toronto’s seasonal markets re-open this month. There are many changes in the works around the city, so check our Markets Listing page later in May. We’ll be updating information as the details get finalized.
So why do markets matter?
According to the Declaration of the 9th International Public Markets Conference held in March 2015, markets are:
- Nexus points linking urban and peri-urban regions…
- Dynamic, inclusive and safe spaces…
- Vital centres of local food systems…
- Avenues for the promotion and preservation of local culture…
- Engines for entrepreneurship…
- Centres of neighbourhoods….
and in Toronto, they’re the funnest, tastiest places to be! Come on out an find a market to love this season!
JOIN WINTER MARKETS IN CELEBRATING 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE GREENBELT, FEBRUARY 22-28, 2015!
You’re Invited to Enjoy Fresh, Delicious Local Food and Activities
These Toronto and area farmers’ markets will be offering special activities and plenty of locally grown food as we celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Ontario’s Greenbelt:
Sorauren FM: Monday Feb. 23, 3-7 pm
Montgomery’s Inn FM: Wednesday Feb. 24, 3-7 pm
Dufferin Grove Organic FM: Thursday Feb. 26, 3-7 pm
Toronto Botanical Garden Organic FM: Thursday Feb. 26, 3-7 pm
Evergreen Brick Works FM: Saturday Feb. 28, 9am-1pm
The Stop’s Wychwood Barns FM: Saturday Feb. 28, 8am-1pm
Our farmers’ markets are joining others from across the province to highlight the 10th Anniversary of the Ontario government’s creation of the Greenbelt. At nearly 2 million acres, it’s the world’s largest permanently protected greenbelt, keeping fertile farmlands, forests, and wetlands safe and sustainable. Hope you can celebrate with us!
Calling All Groundhogs! Shake off that winter slumber and come on out to Toronto’s winter markets, the local eating is good!
Lots of market vendors and managers have just returned from the annual Guelph Organic Conference. Here’s an assessment of the changing local food vibe from Cookie Roscoe, manager of The Stop’s Wychwood Barns Farmers’ Market and Sick Kids Farmers’ Market:
I am still feeling the love from the Organic Farmers Conference the last Saturday of January. I feel very lucky to have this conference to go to, so that I can listen in to all the ways that the roots of our food systems are adapting to support us. Located in the heart of the University of Guelph, this is a 4 day workshop- a-thon with about 100 trade show vendors ranging from vegan marshmallow sales to open pollinated seed vendors on through rototiller manufacturers. I always get a little baggie of composted turkey droppings that my houseplants thrive on, and I hang out at the Market Managers Room to talk about markets when I’m not at a workshop.
I’ve been going for 10 years now, and what the “buzz” is about changes slightly every year. When I was first going it seemed a lot of aged farmers and gardeners were moaning about how tired they were and how there were no new farmers coming up through the ranks to take their place. Then, for a few years, there seemed to be a lot of dewy eyed young farmers wondering if it’s worthwhile to buy a tractor or can we not share things like that? This year, I heard quite a few farmers who I know I’ve spoken with in the past say they may very well be ready to make the leap to come to city markets. The trend seems to be that certified organic growers are feeling underappreciated at the smaller markets outside of the city and are ready to drive the extra hours a day to just not have to explain over and over again what the difference is.
This year’s buzz was about all the new little markets that have sprung up across the province in every small town and how they are faring, and how the farmers who go to them feel about it.
Happy New Year, and thank you for your interest in Toronto’s farmers’ markets! We’re looking forward to a healthy and delicious year of local eating!
On our site you’ll find schedules and locations of year-round and seasonal markets throughout the city, links to market vendors’ websites or facebook pages, and resources for market organizers. We hope you’ll help us spread the word about the great food and fun at Toronto’s farmers’ markets!
We’ve got a lot of delightful things at markets this winter:
- Steaming cups of hot chocolate or apple cider to welcome you inside, locally roasted coffee to start your morning, and locally crafted herbal teas for a mellow end to the day
- Fresh and flavourful cool weather greens, salad mixes and sprouts from farmers’ greenhouses
- Treats for everyone you love, including beeswax candles, jams, fragrant natural soaps, dried mushrooms, nuts, chocolate and baking
- A broad selection of storage crops from local fields and orchards for delicious feasts
- Well-raised meats, free-range eggs, and artisanal cheeses
- Specialty foods: wild, gluten-free, vegan, heritage, pastured, fermented…. You name it!
No crazy doorcrasher sales or canned music, just plenty of good, healthy, and delicious food brought to you by our local growers, makers and bakers!
We’d like to see Toronto fed with as much local food as possible. By growing hardy spring and fall crops, as well as using excellent storage techniques and season extension methods, market growers are able to provide us with a strong selection of produce through most of the year. Of course, eating local isn’t just about fruits and vegetables; we’ve also got farms producing meats, dairy, preserves and other value-added options, and all kinds of other local food businesses able to keep feeding us while the weather is chilly as well.
A strong local food system requires income for producers all year long, so we encourage you to keep right on attending through the indoor season. We’ve added a List of Winter Markets page to help you find the ones that suit your location and schedule. Here’s to hearty, healthy, local menus ahead!
What a beautiful time of year. Come and join the celebration at Toronto’s farmers’ markets! Everything you need for fall feasts is waiting….
Market tables are sagging under the weight of good harvests! Plan to bring home enough to put some by for delicious winter eating.
Sunday September 21st is the day to head to The Toronto Garlic Festival at Evergreen Brick Works. There’s a free shuttle every ten minutes from the parkette by Broadview Station so you don’t Stink and Drive.
This summer there’s a nice way to honour vendors who do a beautiful job of setting up for market, the “Local Bounty” Vendor Display Contest! By taking a photo and sending it, along with the name of the vendor and why their display looks great, anyone can nominate their favourite vendor(s).
Customers who ‘like’ nominated photos on the Greenbelt Foundation’s Facebook Page will be entered in a contest to win market goodie baskets, and the ten vendors who receive the most likes will win $300 each!
Send photos of displays you want to nominate to Chloe Brown at email@example.com. Photos of the displays that have already been nominated are on the Greenbelt Foundation’s Facebook page.