Everyone loves a good farmers market. Farmers market have really reached their pinnacle in the last few years with markets popping up in parks, underused parking lots and alleys all across Ontario. The reason why they are so popular is that it’s a great place to support local businesses and pick up food that was grown and sourced locally. Sounds great right? While for most of us our experience at a farmers market is positive, it turns out that many of us could be getting duped. It turns out your local vegetable vendor could be giving you the runaround.
CBC’s Marketplace has recently uncovered that there is a seedy underbelly to the farmers market industry where vendors are purposely misleading consumers about the food for sale on their tables. The article which can be read in full here exposes the fact that many consumers could be paying a premium for products with fake backstories and about where it was grown.
The Marketplace team went undercover to 11 farmers markets across Ontario and discovered that at certain markets different vendors were claiming that their product was fresh and recently picked whereas, in reality, the vendors were purchasing the product from a wholesaler and reselling the good elsewhere. Tsk, tsk.
While technically if they are selling you a tomato you get a tomato, and that’s not the problem. The problem is if you think you are buying a tomato that was grown in your provincial backyard, but really the product could be coming from the U.S.A or Mexico. And if that okay with you, you might as well just go to No Frills and not pay the premium the vendors usually ask for.
Take a look at the video and decide for yourself. While many local vendors are doing the right thing, as consumers we always have to be vigilant especially when buying “premium” products.