What is a Producer-only Market?
When is a Farmers’ Market a Farmers’ Market?
Recently CBC’s Marketplace aired an episode investigating resellers at Farmers’ Markets in and around the Toronto region. Unfortunately the presenters did not make clear that not all Farmers’ Markets operate under the same set of rules. The markets singled out in the episode allowed vendors to resell produce that was not grown by the vendor doing the selling. When this information is not made clear, the customer may walk away thinking they have supported the local economy where in fact they have not.
These issues do not exist at the Carp Farmers’ Market.
The Carp Farmers’ Market Association which operates our Market is a non-profit organization run by and for its members, the vendors you see each Saturday. Our farmers grow the products they sell, our bakers bake the bread you buy and all our artisanal crafts are made by our crafters.
To ensure the integrity of our producer-only status we have a rigourous jurying process that ensures that each product on offer meets the standards of the Market. We constantly monitor the products on offer to ensure that no unapproved products are on offer.
You may find some produce to be available in what would seem to be ‘out-of-season’, but that is because we have a number of growers who use different techniques to provide a longer season for a crop to be available to you. These would include different varieties, growing in greenhouses, low tunnels, extended storage. That is why you can find tomatoes and cucumbers in May (grown in a greenhouse), raspberries in June (grown in an unheated greenhouse), strawberries in the fall (day-neutral varieties), carrots at Christmas (extended storage).
We are very proud to be the largest producer-only market in Eastern Ontario for 26 seasons and believe we have the freshest, most delicious local products for you to enjoy. You, our customers are an integral part of our fabulous market, so when you come out next Saturday, we encourage you to talk to our vendors about the their production methods.