It’s high season for farmer’s markets across Ontario — and while that likely means line ups, stroller wars, and snarls as you both reach for the last bunch of heirloom carrots, it also means endless variety, getting to know your farmers and a rainbow of flavours.
When the mercury rises, we can all get a little snarky — but that doesn’t mean the market can’t be fun! Follow our fun guide to farmers’ market etiquette to make the most of your experience.
DO get there when the market is just opening if you’re not into crowds or desperately need that one certain something.
DON’T just sample away. Always ask first — the farmer will (most likely) gladly give you a taste, but you wouldn’t expect someone in a restaurant to just snag one of your fries… would you?
DO remember your own bags. Not all farmers will have bags and you don’t want to be juggling while digging for change.
DON’T put your new purchased potatoes down on top of the freshly picked strawberries. Be kind to the food and it will be kind to you.
DO walk the whole market first. You need to take a lay of the land, see who has the best of what and then start buying.
DON’T make idle chit chat if there’s a line-up. Get to know your farmers but don’t hold everyone else up if their booth is busy. If you want time for a chat, try coming earlier.
DO shop at the end of the day for deals — but don’t haggle the price of that tomato at sunrise. Farmers set their prices the way they do for a reason.
DON’T shuck your corn at the market. It just makes a mess and shucking it just means it loses moisture and flavor.
DO stroll, enjoy and mingle. That’s what it’s all about after all!