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Rurban Farmers Market vendors selling plenty of local product

June 26, 2020   ·   0 Comments

It’s been a long road for small business owners. Retail stores and local business owners have endured the past three months, scraping away at their payments just waiting to welcome customers.

At the second week of the Alliston BIA RURBAN Farmers’ Market, the consumer spending was excellent once again. A new vendor, Connie’s Kitchen, made her first appearance. At the time, it was just food at the market, but artisans are once again in the picture.

The location at the corner of Victoria St and Centre Street South is hard to miss. With exceptional weather these past few weeks, it’s a perfect excuse to walk and shop in a safe environment.

Staff spray your hands with sanitizer and posted directional signs guide you through the market.

Even Member of Parliament Terry Dowdall appeared seeking, as he has multiple times already, to educate himself on the feelings and beliefs from local business owners.

Having a small business background, Dowdall understands the complexities of running a business and how local retail shops continue to struggle.

“The biggest issue by far is retail business and mostly the small retail businesses. Some aren’t available to get the loans and some aren’t available because of the commercial rent,” Dowdall said.

“I think the businesses were left behind and I think for a few months now they’re not getting that rent subsidy.”

Dowdall also believes it’s all in consumer confidence and the customers who attend the Farmers’ Market seem to be quite confident. Mulmur-Tos Honey Bee Keeper Glen Kidd and his Bee Keeping Assistant Eve Kurschner told The Times what gives them the most joy selling their honey.

“I think it’s the questions on bee keeping. It’s the question on honey itself. It’s learning how to market and set it up so it’s enticing, so it looks good. We’ve learned as we’ve gone along, but mostly it’s the customers,” Kurschner said.

Mulmur-Tos Honey has faced a few setbacks. Kidd says the farm has experienced a 20 to 25 per cent loss in production this year because of COVID-19 and ensuring everyone’s safety on the farm was a top priority.

Both Kidd and Kurschner purchased gloves, masks and hand sanitizers while they were working out on the farms.

Every Saturday, the company is bringing raw honey for sale along with creamed honey, creamed cinnamon honey and creamed ginger honey as well.

Kidd specializes in making candles and fire starters with his products. When he began the company roughly seven years ago (and being a vendor for the past five), it was a side-job for something to do during his retirement. Since then, he has seen the business soar.

One of the newest vendors at the market, Indian Flames, was previously a vendor before taking a break. The recent move for owners Michell Joyce and her husband Kevin Thompson back to the Farmers’ Market surely wasn’t a rash decision.

Both just recently took over the business in the height of the pandemic and have incurred an immense amount of money to purchase paper towels and hand sanitizer to keep everything clean.

Moving to the market on Saturdays was an easy transition selling samosas, and the tasty treats have proved a hot commodity.

“We did 450 samosas last week; this week I think we’ve done 600. We’re just going to keep on increasing. We’re probably going to move up to 800,” Joyce said.

As the weeks go by this summer and with restrictions still currently in place, the Farmers’ Market will be around on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. for local consumers to pay a visit.

By Robert Belardi


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