Warm Up With Local Wool

Warm Up With Local Wool

Photos: Wonkyeye Photography Nova Scotia is so beautiful this time of year. Fresh air, the crunch of leaves under your boots, and the still sunny (albeit shorter and colder) days. It’s a great time to get outside and explore, provided you’ve put on a few layers! Farmers’ markets are about more than just food, and this is a great time of year to explore beautiful knits and cozy clothing on your market trip. Here are a few reasons to add local wool to your wardrobe this season. Wool is a renewable, natural fibre. French settlers brought the first sheep to Canada in the 1650’s. Wool helps regulate body temperature because it is an absorbent fibre, making it suitable for warm or cool climates. Wool fibres do not easily pill, snag, or break, so wool garments generally outlast synthetics. Wool is the only natural fibre that is resistant to flame. We have a number of wool producers in Nova Scotia, from whom you can purchase yarns, knit wear, and other goods. Many more local artisans work with wool to create beautiful garments. Look for them on your next market trip! Wool facts adapted from Canadian Cooperative Wool Growers Ltd....
9 Nova Scotia Farmers’ Markets Open In The Winter

9 Nova Scotia Farmers’ Markets Open In The Winter

Market shopping isn’t just a summertime thing. If you’re looking for a farmers’ market this winter, we’ve got you covered! Below is a list of certified farmers’ markets open through the Winter 2017 season. Cape Breton Farmers’ Market Location: 340 Keltic Drive, Sydney River Hours of operation: Saturdays, 8:30 am – 1 pm Greenwood Mall Farmers’ Market Location: Greenwood Mall, 963 Central Avenue, Greenwood Hours of operation: Thursdays, Noon – 4 pm Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market Location: Pier 20, 1209 Marginal Road, Halifax Hours of operation: Mon-Fri, 10 am – 5 pm; Saturdays, 7 am – 3 pm; Sundays 9 am – 3pm Kentville Farmers’ Market Location: Kentville Recreation Centre, 350 Main St. Kentville Hours of operation: Wednesdays, 10 am – 2 pm Lunenburg Farmers’ Market Location: Lunenburg Community Centre, 17 Green Street, Lunenburg Hours of operation: Thursdays, 8:30 am – Noon*  *Open 8:00 am – Noon until the end of December. Open 8:30 – Noon January – April. New Glasgow Farmers’ Market Location: 261 Glasgow Street (behind Glasgow Square), New Glasgow Hours of operation: Saturdays, 9 am – 1 pm Tatamagouche Farmers’ Market (opens April 8th 2016) Location: Creamery Square, 41 Creamery Road, Tatamagouche Hours of operation: Saturdays, 9 am – 1 pm Truro Farmers Market  Location: 15 Young St, Truro, NS Hours of operation: Saturdays 9 am – 1 pm Wolfville Farmers’ Market Location: DeWolfe Building, 24 Elm Street, Wolfville  Hours of operation: Saturdays, 8:30 am – 1 pm Certified Farmers’ Markets adhere to a Make It, Bake It, Grow It policy. Find a certified farmers’ market near you on our Find A Market...
Eight Tips For Building The Perfect Local Cheese Platter

Eight Tips For Building The Perfect Local Cheese Platter

Ever notice how guests seem to gather – or crowd – around a great cheese platter? Loved by guests, as well as the wise host, a cheese platter has become a staple appetizer at any party. Creating a great cheese platter can be intimidating with so many cheese options, not to mention pickles, jellies and cracker choices. Here are 8 tips to help you build the perfect local cheese platter this season. Tip #1: Think about variety. Offer cheeses of different textures, colours, and with flavours ranging from mild to strong. A typical cheese platter offers an aged cheese, a soft cheese, a firm cheese, and a blue cheese. You could also consider offering cheeses of different categories based on their animal origin (e.g. cow, sheep, or goat). It’s best to have at least one cheese on your platter that is familiar to most people. 4-5 types of cheese is usually plenty for a standard party – you don’t want to overwhelm peoples’ palates and you want to be sure to leave enough space on the platter for complimentary items after all. Tip #2: Be mindful of temperature. Though cheese is typically stored in the refrigerator, it is actually served best when at room temperature. Allow your cheese to sit out for about an hour before serving so it is not too cold. Being at room temperature will help to better bring out the natural flavours in the cheese. Tip #3: Leave Space. When deciding on the placement of your cheese, keep in mind that that the flavours and smells of cheese can transfer over to one another. For...

3 Ways to Boost Farmers’ Market Sales

As many market vendors will attest, the old adage “if you build it, they will come,” does not always mean “… and they will buy something once they get here.”  Even though the Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market attracts thousands of visitors weekly, it is up to each of us to figure out how to convert those visitors into paying customers. There ARE ways you can boost sales, if you diligently and consistently apply the following: #1. IMPROVE YOUR BOOTH’S “CURB APPEAL.” Just like selling a house, a prospective customer forms an initial, and sometimes indelible, impression of you and your product(s) by the appearance of your booth. – The first and perhaps most important thing you can do is have a well-lit booth. Like moths drawn to an outdoor porchlight, the human eye is also programmed to look where there is light. Boost your lighting (especially during the dark winter months) and you will attract the attention of far more customers than if your booth is dimly-lit or completely unlit. – The second thing you can do to boost your curb appeal is to always keep your booth well-stocked and meticulously organised.  If you are selling something in a container (i.e., preserves, cosmetics, oils, etc), ensure ALL labels (including those going all the way to the back of your display) are facing forward, and that the first row of product is smack-dab at the front of the shelf (known as the “leading edge” in retail terms). Furthermore, always check the status of your display. For reasons which defy explanation, the vast majority of customers who pick up a product...

2016 Atlantic Canadian Farmers’ Market Conference

On November 28th, we will host the 2016 Atlantic Canadian Farmers’ Market Conference in Moncton, New Brunswick. This one-day bilingual conference is the only of its kind in all of eastern Canada, bringing together vendors, market managers, organizers and partners from NS, NB, PEI and NFLD for a fantastic day of learning and networking. We are once again hosting this one-day conference in partnership with the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) and their annual three-day conference which takes place November 28th-30th. Specifically, the Atlantic Canadian Farmers’ Market Conference takes place on the first day of the ACORN Conference. Farmers’ market vendors, volunteers and staff can register for the one-day farmers’ market conference at a cost of $40 (FMNS member markets and their vendors) or $50 (non-members) while ACORN conference attendees, registered for the three-day conference, can move between the farmers’ market conference and the larger ACORN conference at the ACORN registration rate. Registration is now open for the Atlantic Canadian Farmers’ Market Conference and space is limited. View this information in both English and French here. Workshops: (#1.) Farmers’ Market Fundamentals This hour-long session will cover the basics – from formulas for market growth and product mix to research on why markets fail and how your market can thrive. Michelle Wolf, armed with more than 20 years of farmers’ market experience and expertise, will open the session. Keltie Butler, Executive Director of Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia, will follow alongside two Market Managers. With all that, we’ll still leave plenty of time for Q&A. (#2.) Drawing Customers In: Marketing & Promotions for the Farmers’ Market Sector In this one-hour...