Nelson City Council will decide the farmers’ market’s future on Monday

BC has declared farmers’ markets an essential service because they provide a local, healthy food option for residents. Yet that does not guarantee the Nelson farmers’ market will happen this year.

We need your support to show Nelson City Council keeping your farmers’ market going this year should be a priority now more than ever to ensure your access to local food during this pandemic.

Will you send a message to Nelson City Council that we need the farmers’ market now more than ever to ensure food security and support local businesses? Use the form below to send your message to the mayor and council about why you and your Nelson neighbours need the farmers’ markets this year.

Since 2001, EcoSociety has successfully operated the farmers’ markets in Nelson to support our local food security and local economy by providing a place for the community to come together and celebrate locally grown food.

  • This year’s market will be different. The vendors will be limited to farmers and prepared food providers. There will be new safety protocols to limit people’s time and contact in the market.
  • The Nelson farmers’ markets are where low-income seniors and families redeem coupons from the BC Farmers’ Market Association for healthy produce. Last year over $26,000 of coupons went through this program here in Nelson. We will ensure special shopping hours and priority access for coupon holders who are often the most vulnerable residents to the pandemic. 
  • We’re proposing two weekly farmers’ markets on Saturdays and Wednesdays from June-October that will provide the best resident access to local fresh food in a safe outdoor space.
  • EcoSociety is a community non-profit. Running the markets is a labour of love and some years we don’t even break even on covering all market costs. This year, with fewer vendors, we are expecting 12% of normal funds. To run the markets this year on a shoestring with increasing costs, we are expecting costs to be $70,000. We’re grateful CBT has kicked in $15,000. We cannot run the markets without the City’s financial support for the markets with a grant of $30,000, comparable to grants they give to other Nelson non-profit organizations every year. Even with that support, EcoSociety will be asking our supporters for donations to fill the remaining gap.

We need to be preparing locally for food shortages from external supply chains. Having an established Nelson farmers’ market this year will ensure the local farming community is prioritizing getting their products to Nelson residents.

If enough people show their support for the Nelson farmers’ market, then Nelson City Council will see their value and will make the right decision to support the market as well. Will you send an email to Nelson City Council before Monday’s meeting so that they know the community is 100% behind the farmers’ market?

Watch the livestream of the Nelson City Council meeting here on Monday, May 4, at 7 pm.

Fill in this form, add your own message if you like or use what’s already suggested, and click Submit. Your message will go to the mayor and council and the city’s CAO.


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