Latin vibes with Ivan Palomares Music at a Kimberley Farmers’ Market in June. Facebook file

Latin vibes with Ivan Palomares Music at a Kimberley Farmers’ Market in June. Facebook file

The importance of Farmers’ Markets to Kimberley/Cranbrook economies

In the past ten years and more farmers’ markets have sprung up across the province, and studies have shown that they bring tremendous economic impact to their communities.

According to Wildsight, which hosts farmers’ markets in Kimberley and Cranbrook there are many ways that the markets have a positive impact.

First, you provide direct support to farmers as they receive 100 per cent of the retail price on the goods they sell.

“Having buyers passionate about buying local food means that we can focus on growing better produce rather than scrambling to sell our goods through middlemen where demands can be unrealistic for small producers”, said Michael Albert and Marie-Eve Fradette of Apple Quill Farm in Wycliffe. “Our small size allows us to focus on quality and variety of goods that can be a challenge to find in a traditional store.”

And the money made by artisans and farmers is then circulated into the community.

Another thing that surveys have found, according to Wildsight is that neighbouring businesses noted increased sales on market days. Moreover, Moreover, the market supports small businesses and helps them grow.

“Alannah Leach, Kimberley Farmers’ Market Coordinator, points out that many local establishments started out as market stalls. Kimberley businesses like Moody Bee, Bohemian Spirits, Little Big, Bread & Butter, and Tumbled Earth all had their beginnings at the Farmers’ Market.”

Markets also increase food security. The more food produced within say 100 kilometres of a town, the more prepared the community is in the event of long-distance food supply chains.

The BC Farmers’ Markets Nutrition Coupon Program also supports low-income families, pregnant people and seniors. Coupons can be used to purchase vegetables, fruits, nuts, eggs, dairy and more.

The Kimberley Farmers’ Market is held every Thursday from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Howard Street.

In Cranbrook , it’s Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on 10th Ave. South.