Running a genuine farmers’ market requires a lot of behind-the-scenes work to ensure that customers are presented with a genuine, fresh product direct from the producer.
When the Rotary Club of Hall founded the Capital Region Farmers’ Market, it set out to create a unique market where customers could speak with the person who picked the produce, or made the sausages and could tell you exactly what the ingredients were.
Our stallholders are not retailers of other people’s produce and behind-the-scenes, club members visit every farm or food manufacturer to ensure that they comply with the market’s strict guidelines.
That the Hall Rotary club, we refer to these visits as ‘compliance visits’. This is where we check that stallholders, or potential stallholders, actually produce what they sell.
Each stallholder is licensed to sell particular items. This ensures that we don’t have an oversupply of some products and that stallholders and customers have a good balance of variety.
The Rotary Club of Hall’s Capital Region Farmers’ Market hasn’t missed a beat throughout the COVID lockdown period. Regular visitors to the market will have noticed that the club has had to make a variety of changes to meet ever-changing health regulations.
Not only has the market continued to trade throughout the pandemic, but the club’s market committee has also continued to travel when and where possible, to do spot checks on stallholders.
This week, club members, Yvonne, John and Fiona conducted a compliance check on potential new stallholder growing fruit and vegetables at Young NSW.
The grower had submitted the stallholder application, which included many varieties of vegetables and some fruit.
“We were pleasantly surprised to see that all varieties of vegetables were available as he had described and were growing in a healthy, well-maintained environment,” said Market Director, Yvonne Robson.
These checks on stallholders are essential to maintain the integrity of the produce available at the Capital Region Farmers’ Market every Saturday morning.
The club’s market committee is currently putting together a program of compliance checks for the coming year.