The lure of fresh food, flow­ers, ideas and more

Sackville Tribune - - NEWS - SUB­MIT­TED BY CATHY FYNN

SACKVILLE, N.B. – It’s Satur­day morn­ing and the lure of fresh has hooked you into strolling up Bridge Street block to the Sackville Farm­ers’ Mar­ket. Fresh bak­ing, fresh flow­ers, fresh veggies and even fresh ideas await your plea­sure in a year-round pedes­trian mar­ket where lo­cal farm­ers and pro­duc­ers rub el­bows with tal­ented ar­ti­sans and mu­si­cians. Here at the Sackville Farm­ers’ Mar­ket you’ll find the best the area has to of­fer, year-round, ev­ery Satur­day morn­ing from 9 a.m. to noon.

It’s a beau­ti­ful sight. Bun­dles of fresh herbs, ta­bles of fresh pro­duce and an im­pres­sive se­lec­tion of lo­cally raised fresh meat, and not a shop­ping cart in sight. Fam­i­lies with chil­dren are wel­come – it’s a learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for them, too. You can chat with ven­dors who have grown their veg­eta­bles from seedlings and har­vested them that morn­ing – per­haps get tips on how to pre­pare, process or pre­serve your pur­chases.

It’s not as though this is a new idea. The Sackville Farm­ers’ Mar­ket is one of the longestrun­ning farm­ers’ mar­kets in New Brunswick, at­tract­ing a steadily grow­ing clien­tele who want to re­con­nect with their food and their neigh­bours in the am­biance of a lo­cal mar­ket. With free park­ing just a short walk away, there’s ev­ery rea­son to hop out of bed on Satur­day morn­ing and en­joy at cof­fee at the mar­ket café down­town. 1970s, shop­pers are buy­ing in to buy­ing lo­cal.

In Sackville and be­yond, peo­ple want a more sat­is­fy­ing shop­ping ex­pe­ri­ence. They want health­ier food but they also want to shop re­spon­si­bly – less pack­ag­ing, more re­cy­cling and fewer green­house gas emis­sions from trans­port­ing prod­ucts. Above all, they want to sup­port lo­cal farm­ers and busi­nesses.

Ac­cord­ing to a Busi­ness Devel­op­ment Bank of Canada sur­vey con­ducted in 2013, 72 per cent of At­lantic Cana­di­ans said they make it a point to buy lo­cally made prod­ucts. A whop­ping 97 per cent said they did so to help the lo­cal econ­omy and 96 per cent did it for a lo­cal farmer. A na­tional study con­ducted on be­half of the Na­tional Farm­ers’ Mar­ket and Agri­cul­ture and Agri-Food Canada re­leased in 20009 re­ported that 92 per cent of shop­pers said that buy­ing di­rectly from a farmer is im­por­tant to them. That land­mark study fur­ther stated the im­pact of farm­ers’ mar­kets on the Canadian econ­omy was re­ported to be over $3 bil­lion. Mar­kets stim­u­late the econ­omy in a va­ri­ety of ways:

Job cre­ation: 55 per cent of ven­dors sur­veyed said their par­tic­i­pa­tion in farm­ers’ mar­kets had led to the cre­ation of one to five jobs.

New busi­ness growth: The low over­head and easy en­try ap­peals to en­trepreneurs young and old. A num­ber of th­ese peo­ple go on to cre­ate store-front busi­nesses.

Gen­er­at­ing in­comes: Mar­kets are im­por­tant sources of farm in­come and play a key role in the mar­ket­ing of Canadian agri­cul­tural prod­ucts. They also help ven­dors connect with cus­tomers and in­crease their busi­ness be­yond the mar­ket.

The Sackville Farm­ers’ Mar­ket con­tin­ues to pro­vide area res­i­dents the op­por­tu­nity to sup­port the lo­cal econ­omy.

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