We get asked the question above a fair bit – the answer is both simple and complex.
For the simple answer, you should arm yourself with the website address of the Toronto Farmers Market Network (TFMN.CA). Pay special attention to the menu on the right – they allow you to view the markets in different groupings such as a straight up list, a map format and even listed by their links. It’s a great resource to find local farmers markets.
The more complex answer relates to the amount of resellers vs. the amount of people selling local food (and if the person selling is indeed the person who harvested it). We discussed the issue of resellers a month or so back here.
If you are looking for local food for sale by those who either were the individuals who made or harvested or those who are close to source, it can be more difficult to find. Trial and error and talking to those around you tend to be a good starting point to find what you are looking for – regardless of what that is.
In our quest to purchase as close to the source of origin as possible (geographically and economically), we have found the Brick Works Farmers Market (Saturdays) and Wychwood Barns Saturday Market to both be local and close to source. This comes with a price and their items can be a bit more expensive than some of the alternatives – a careful eye will reveal many deals for those in the hunt.
Another handy reference (which goes well beyond the blanket of Toronto) is Greenbeltfresh.ca and it’s comprehensive list of farmer’s markets which feature products from the Ontario Greenbelt (of which we sit in the middle!). You can see their list here – be sure to experiment a little – you can filter by day of week, location and more. There’s also some great reading on the site.
All of the photos in this post (including this amazing homemade chive and cheese biscuit) were from the Wychwood Farmers Market last weekend.