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Confused about the origin of some products at your market?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Anne Freeman October 17, 2017 @ 2:37 pm

There has been recent media coverage of farmers’ market  ‘resellers’ who buy what they sell rather than producing it. Customers have a right to know where the products at markets come from, and market vendors and managers have a responsibility to be open and clear about what’s being offered for sale.

When resellers purposefully lead customers to believe that they are the original growers or producers of the products, this deception undermines the hard work of  farmers who bring great local food to our markets direct from their farms, and the dedicated community members who organize them.

Are you looking for products that are direct from the farm? Here are a few tips.

  • Ask your local market manager about the rules regarding reselling, and whether they have a way of verifying where the foods at the market come from.

  • Learn when things are in season. Foodland Ontario has a helpful Availability Guide: https://www.ontario.ca/foodland/page/availability-guide

  • If you see something you don’t expect, ask the vendor about it. You might learn that they have a greenhouse or controlled storage, or that they bring items in addition to their own to broaden selection at some times of year.

  • Sometimes you might find that farmers are too busy or too tired to have a lengthy chat, that they finished harvesting late and got up early, or their tomatoes got blight, or there was an early frost. Pretty soon you’ll know who ‘your’ farmers are.

 Farmers’ markets are great places to learn about food and farming. We encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity:

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