Ontarions encouraged to support local food with visits to farmers markets
By Top Crop Manager
June 3, 2016 - Ontarions are encouraged to help celebrate Local Food Week (June 6-12) with a visit to an Ontario farmers' market. Local farmers' markets provide an opportunity to taste and enjoy the delicious food grown in Ontario and meet the many people who grow it.
Early-season crops are ready to kick off this local food season: rhubarb, asparagus, strawberries, beets, cabbage, cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce, spinach peppers, green onions, parsnips, potatoes, sweet potatoes and possibly carrots are available to enjoy. Complementing the selection of early-season produce is an array of preserves, jams and jellies, fresh-baked goods, botanicals, honey, maple syrup, VQA wines, meat and eggs.
"June is the start of the outdoor farmers' market season in Ontario," says Farmers' Markets Ontario executive director, Robert Chorney. "Farmers' Markets Ontario, celebrating their 25th anniversary this year, represents more than 180 farmers' markets across the province, offering consumers direct access to fresh foods produced nearby, at the peak of their freshness and flavour and puts them in touch with the hard-working farmers who produce the food."
"Farmers' markets in Ontario not only bring city people and country people together, they bring neighbours together and foster a sense of community," adds Chorney. "They're also fun places to be and a wonderful way to teach kids where the food they eat really comes from."
An estimated 37,000 families in Ontario are engaged in farming, many of whom have been inspected by Farmers' Markets Ontario and have been cleared to identify themselves as authentic MyPick® Verified Local Farmers® vs. vendors who buy their produce–much of it imported–at food terminals. "MyPick® farmers are the real deal," says Chorney. "They're the true heroes of Ontario's farmers' markets."
For more information about Local Food Week, visit loveontfood.ca and use #loveONTfood to follow what's happening. To find a farmers' market near you, visit www.farmersmarketsontario.com