Strong locally grown pull bolsters area produce scene

02/17/2012 10:49:00 AM
Cynthia David

“As soon as local asparagus comes in, we stop importing,” Di Marco said, echoing other retailers. 

“Same with broccoli. If broccoli starts June 26, I have to make sure I’m out of imports or else it won’t sell.

“We still support Ontario even if we have to sell it for three or four times the price.”

Every new restaurant, from the smallest hole-in-the-wall to the brand new Trump International Hotel and Tower, now trumpets a locally inspired menu.

Across the province, 158 weekly markets are preparing to open their umbrellas at the end of May, said Catherine Clark, executive assistant at Farmers’ Markets Ontario in Brighton.

To weed out resellers who arrive from the food terminal with everything from U.S. beans to Costa Rican pineapples, Clark said there’s a been a push for MyPick certification.

Growers who join the program are inspected by Farmers’ Markets Ontario and given promotional materials to prove they’re selling only what they produce, Clark said.

To give customers a taste of the farmers market experience, Canada’s largest supermarket chain offers direct-store delivery of fresh produce where possible.


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