Farm­ers mar­ket a grow­ing ini­tia­tive

Central Leader - - NEWS - By EMMA WHIT­TAKER

If all goes to plan for Lisa Loveday we should be able to ditch the su­per­mar­kets and buy most of what we need fresh from lo­cal pro­duc­ers.

Ms Loveday is the chair­woman of Grow San­dring­ham which is about to launch a monthly farm­ers mar­ket in the sub­urb.

The group has its roots in the in­ter­na­tional Tran­si­tion Towns move­ment which en­cour­ages com­mu­ni­ties to make them­selves more self suf­fi­cient to en­able them to bet­ter deal with chal­lenges of cli­mate change and oil short­ages.

Some of the ini­tia­tives the group has been run­ning since its in­cep­tion last year in­clude food swaps, bulk buy­ing of or­ganic prod­ucts and of­fer­ing classes in things like sewing and cheese mak­ing.

‘‘Th­ese are all skills peo­ple have lost but would love to learn,’’ Ms Loveday says.

‘‘If you buy or­ganic it can be more ex­pen­sive and the bulk buy­ing means it’s avail­able to peo­ple at af­ford­able prices.’’

The mar­ket is a flag­ship project.

In­ter­est has been strong and al­most all of the stall spa­ces have been taken.

The mar­ket will show­case lots of new and un­usual lo­cal busi­nesses as well as the usual veg­eta­bles, cheeses, breads and eggs.

‘‘It is an op­por­tu­nity for lo­cals to start a busi­ness,’’ she says.

A lack

of San­dring­ham res­i­dents grow­ing pro­duce on a com­mer­cial scale means some has to come from out­side the area, but there will be a trad­ing ta­ble where peo­ple can sell the ex­cess from their gar­dens.

The mar­ket will run on ev­ery sec­ond Satur­day of the month.

Ms Loveday says the goal is to have it run­ning more reg­u­larly.

‘‘The whole idea of a farm­ers mar­ket is that it is al­ways there and it can get peo­ple out of shop­ping at the su­per­mar­kets and able to buy lo­cal in­stead,’’ she says.

Ms Loveday and Grow San­dring­ham both re­ceived awards at the Al­bertE­den Com­mu­nity Vol­un­teer Awards.

Al­bert-Eden Lo­cal Board mem­ber Helga Ar­ling­ton says it was Ms Loveday’s ef­forts to bring the com­mu­nity to­gether that made her stand out.

‘‘She puts her en­ergy into so many things, but the net ef­fect is com­mu­nity co­he­sion,’’ she says.

Photo: EMMA WHIT­TAKER

Buy fresh:

Lisa Loveday hopes the San­dring­ham Farm­ers Mar­ket will get peo­ple out of su­per­mar­kets and buy­ing lo­cal pro­duce.

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