I was chatting with a market shopper a few weeks ago and they were asking some questions about the rules governing stallholders from outside the Barossa. There are a few things which are awesome about this:
1. A perk of my job is that I get to spend a good chunk of time on Saturday mornings just chatting with people, hearing what they’re up to, what they’re buying and cooking, their thoughts and feedback. Love it!
2. Our Market has a really strong regional brand and is intrinsically linked to the food story of the Barossa.
3. Our shoppers are awesome, curious, invested people who want to know where their food comes from.
I’ve always said that one of the greatest things about a genuine farmers market is the ability to ask questions about your food: where it comes from, who grows it, have chemicals been used, are the workers or farmers paid a living wage… the list goes on.
In the case of those producers who join us from outside the Market, there are a few factors that go into the decision to invite them to become stallholders:
- Firstly, is this a product that is available within the Barossa? If so, is a local producers willing and able to attend the Market instead?
- If not, is this a product which will enhance the Market; will it add an essential element to the Market Mix? A good example here would be that we’re unlikely to invite a cup cake producer from Adelaide to attend but on the other hand, there’s not a lot of ocean in the Barossa (!) so having a seafood producer from Wallaroo is a great way to enhance the offering of the Market while also providing a staple product.
- Other considerations might be whether we can source a certified organic or biodynamic version of the product, whether the stallholder is a small or family owned business or whether we can support a local producer to get up and running to supply the market over time.
All of which leads me to my latest sign-writing venture! To make it clearer which stallholders are joining us from outside the Barosa region and which are dinky di locals,all of our guests from neighbouring regions will now have a natty little sign displayed near their till where it’s easy to see and even easier to understand. Of the roughly 70 stallholders on our books, we have 6 from outside our region at the moment, bringing to our market fresh vegetables, certified organic fruit and fresh and smoked seafood. Keep an eye out for our lovely new signs and even more importantly, have a chat to the families behind the trestles. They’ll be happy to answer any questions about their produce!
The Barossa Farmers Market has always kept a trestle or two aside for our friends from outside our region and we’re happy to continue this tradition. In such a way, our shoppers have access to a fantastic array of produce and we’re able to support agriculture and farming across the State as well as in our own backyard.
Tim and his daughter Georgia from The Wild Apple – one of our stallholders from outside the Barossa, supplying certified organic apples to our Market.
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