Great news to share! Although the strike in Toronto continues, markets are back. Support for local farmers is something we can all agree on, and CUPE, City Councillors and Managers from all related departments have established conditions allowing farmers’ markets at the Civic Centres to re-open. Here’s the schedule:
East York Civic Centre: Tuesdays 8 am to 2 pm, resuming July 7
Etobicoke Civic Centre: Saturdays 8 am to 2 pm resuming July 4
Metro Hall: Thursdays, 8 am to 2 pm, resuming July 2
Nathan Philips Square: Wednesdays 8 am to 2:30 pm: no market on Canada Day, resuming July 8
*Special market for these vendors Thursday July 2, 8 am to 2:00 pm at Yonge-Dundas Square*
North York Civic Centre: Thursdays 8 am to 2 pm, resuming July 2
Scarborough Civic Centre: Tuesdays 8 am to 2:30 pm, resuming July 7
Our Park-based markets are all finding ways to carry on, too. Come out and join us, it’s prime time for great local food.
The last time there was a similar strike, in 2002, farmers just lost out for the duration. This time, with many more markets, the impact of a prolonged strike could have been huge. It’s an indication of the increasing strength of the local food movement that so many people came together to work out temporary solutions for markets in these circumstances. Many advocates collaborated: The Toronto Farmers’ Market Network, The Greenbelt Farmers’ Market Network and The Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation, Ontario Farm Fresh, and Farmers’ Markets Ontario. Both CUPE Locals issued a statement in support, and many City Councillors and their staff, along with Parks, Recreation, Facilities and Public Health managers helped. Bravo for this recognition of the importance of our local food producers.