To market, to market

The recent interest in the potential reloca-
tion of the Centre Mall Farmers’ Market and
the proposed redevelopment of the Hamilton
Farmers’ Market should remind local con-
sumers and politicians that farmers’ markets
are extremely important community assets
that we can’t afford to lose. Farmers’ markets
present many benefits to participating grow-
ers, the local economy, consumers and the
environment. They also offer farmers a
higher return on expenditure for their prod-
ucts, greater control over their economic
lives, an alternate source of revenue, and an
opportunity to diversify areas of expertise
– in agriculture and business, community
support and networking, and direct-sales
Farmers’ markets also help strengthen the
local economy. A dollar spent locally “is usu-
ally spent 6 to 15 times before it leaves the
community. From $1, you create $5 to $14 in
value within that community”. In addition,
consumers drawn to the farmers’ markets
typically spend more money at the stores and
restaurants that surround the market, further
fuelling local economic growth. Farmers’
markets create new job opportunities, par-
ticularly for farm families who often staff the
produce stand, and they have major poten-
tial for safeguarding jobs: a study in On-
tario found that “a total of 24,000 people are
directly involved in preparing and selling the
goods we find in [the province’s 127] farmers’
Consumers benefit from the atmosphere and
experience of farmers’ markets; confidence
in and knowledge of growing location and
agricultural methods employed; access to
fresher, healthier food; and strengthening of
local community networks. Farmers’ markets
also help alleviate some pressure on the en-
vironment: the distance food travels is vastly
Update: The proposed new location of
the Centre Mall Farmers’Market is
Ottawa St at Cannon. Contact Eat Local
for more information.
Hamilton Eat Local:

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