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The Saturday Farmers Market: More Than Just Fruits & Veggies

Here's why farmers markets are important spaces for community connection. 

The Saturday Farmers Market

Published on July 18, 2022

Brightly coloured produce, laughter, freshly baked bread, music, mingling of friends and strangers – there’s no end to the magic of a farmers market.

Beyond serving as places where people can exchange goods and services, farmers markets are also spaces where people can gather and socialize. They’re spaces of commerce and social life that have historically been the centre of urban life in cities around the world. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by twirl girl (@twirlgirlmange)

 

I have been visiting the Farmers Market at the Brick Works since it first opened, the very first one. Connecting directly with the kind farmers who have taught me more about what is essential, beautiful, broken, and hopeful about our food system. They have shared recipes, smiles, hugs, care, and taught me what resilience means in life and work. And they offer the most incredible food that I am so fortunate to nourish my family and friends with.
 Lisa Borden, long-time visitor of the Saturday Farmers Market

Since 2007, the Saturday Farmers Market at Evergreen Brick Works has served as a space for people in Toronto to connect. Over the years, it has grown to become the largest year-round farmers market in the city. Today, the market supports over 60 local farmers, producers, entrepreneurs, and chefs

This month, Foragers Farms and Sosnicki Organics share their experiences as vendors at the Saturday Farmers Market at Evergreen Brick Works.

Foragers Farms

Foragers Farm

  • How long have you been a vendor at the Saturday Farmers Market and what do you sell? 

We have been at Evergreen for two months now! Newbies! We sell an array of in season certified naturally grown vegetables.  We also have a co-op farm with an herbalist who brings her products (Marissa's Herb Garden) and a baker who specializes in Montreal Style Bagels (Headwaters Farm).

Foragers Farm produce

  • What do you believe is the role of farmers markets in supporting sustainable food systems and local producers?

Farmers markets bridge that gap of the connection to source.  It allows for you to know directly where your food comes from/how its grown/who you're supporting when buying that food.  Just like there are family doctors, farmers markets allow for family farmers.

  • What is your favourite part about being a vendor at the Saturday Farmers Market?

The vibe at Evergreen has always attracted nature and local food lovers, so the energy is high spirited.

  • Have you had any unforgettable interactions with customers at the Farmers Market that have impacted you in a positive way?

We have a customer who gifted us her homemade custard for weeks.  What a delight and welcome into the community at Evergreen Brick Works.

  • Do you ever shop at the Saturday Farmers Market? If yes, what are some of your favourite vendors to purchase food/goods from?

Love the organic fruit folks! Can't wait for the cold storage selection in the winter from the vast farmers.

Sosnicki Organics

  • How long have you been a vendor at the Saturday Farmers Market and what do you sell?

Our farm has been at Farmers Market at Evergreen Brick Works since the very humble beginnings, I believe 2009, 2010ish. We sell certified organic vegetables, strawberries, perogies, cabbage rolls and sauerkrauts! 

  • What is your favourite part about being a vendor at the Saturday Farmers Market?

The venue itself – This is the Saturday Farmers Market’s greatest feature for bringing the community, customers, friends, family and all together weekly to support the direct retail sale of organic foodstuffs. Evergreen Brick Works is what we refer to as our "east" market. A gorgeous site - we can promote and get our customers to come down, enjoy the site and get their fresh produce! Having snacks and activities for children are key for a well-rounded farmers market experience. Evergreen Brick Works has this and then some! (E.g. Sipping Container!)

  • What are some of the community benefits of the Saturday Farmers Market?

Access to the freshest veggies available by farmers (most organic like ourselves), an opportunity to meet the people who grew your food and ask what crops are coming in season soon. It’s the important connection with the people who work hard to produce your food!  Other benefits include fresh air, a gorgeous place to walk pets, see a turtle or two, grab lunch, do some arts and crafts with the kids, visit the garden centre to get gardening advice and nab something for your urban garden - Evergreen Brick Works has it all!  

  • Have you had any unforgettable interactions with customers at the Farmers Market that have impacted you in a positive way?

Every. Single. Week. Our customers recharge our batteries and make us excited to go home and get into those fields and harvest more!  We have so many happy regulars now, some now as close as family, who come see us each week!  We've also had the pleasure of meeting Prince Charles back in 2008 at Evergreen Brick Works and actor Rachel McAdams around 2012, who has shopped at Brick Works more than once over the years! 

The Farmers Market is about so much more than shopping or eating, it’s about connection. Being able to support the organic farmers and kind food makers directly while supporting my own wellness is the gift that keeps on giving.
Lisa Borden, long-time visitor of the Saturday Farmers Market

To learn more about the Saturday Farmers Market at Evergreen Brick Works, visit our webpage and to stay up to date with what's on at the market, follow us on Instagram