How to get your farmers' market fix during the lockdown

What's open, who's delivering and where you can pick up local groceries.

Whether you’re a Saturday regular at one of the city’s farmers’ markets or a local veggie ingenue, there are a lot of options coming online when it comes to Nova Scotia produce. Recently the provincial government announced it was providing $30,000 to Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia to help various markets make the transition to online ordering, pick-up locations and eventually home delivery. It’s a move that should help the farmers and please their growing number of customers.

According to FMNS, “2020 was slated to be the biggest year ever” for the province’s markets, at least until COVID-19 laid waste to everybody’s plans. Working through the switch to online shopping, not to mention the general economic slowdown, may cause market sales to slump. But with closed borders putting more attention on supply chains and the wisdom of sending spinach from California to Cole Harbour, watch for 2020 to be the most important year ever for locally produced food. Ever wanted to get one of those weekly “community supported agriculture” boxes, except you worried about having the time to cook all those fresh veggies? Time is now on your side.

The Halifax Brewery Market, located in Brewery Square at 1496 Lower Water Street, is the Halifax market designated to receive the virtual-shopping funding, and promises to be online soon. In the meantime, it recently opened the offline Neighbourhood Goods store featuring produce and products from lots of regular market vendors, including what we all want—bread—from five local bakeries: @goldislandbakery, @artofslowfood, @thetwocrumpeteers, @toa_bakery and @boulangerielavendeenne. The store is currently open Monday through Friday, 10am-2pm, but you should check the market’s Instagram feed to make sure the opening times haven’t changed.

There are plenty of other options for transitioning your coronavirus shut-in vibe to a Saturday market vibe—mildly hung-over, sunglasses on, in your best sweats. Here are more favourite markets, vendors and mini-markets with online shopping. And with more popping up all the time, we hope this will never be the complete list.

Alderney Landing Farmers’ Market
These farmers have it going on—lots to choose from at the online store including local meats, greens, beer, hand sanitizer made by Steinhart Distilleries, baked goods and even chocolate Easter treats. Offering pick-up and delivery options.

Elmridge Farm
Seaport Market staple Elmridge Farm is offering multiple ways to serve customers. Vegetables, eggs, frozen squash, rhubarb and preserves are all available for online ordering for home delivery (charges depend on where you live in the HRM but range from $6.90 to $18.40), or pick up at the Halifax Forum parking lot (corner of Windsor and Young Streets) either Wednesday or Saturday, minimum $25 order.

Getaway Farmers and Butchers
All your meat needs. Getaway is offering online ordering and pick-up at the Seaport Market (1209 Marginal Road). They will load your meat order right into your trunk.

HRM Food & Co
This site collects all sorts of food sellers' sites, calling itself "a small place to get all the good things." It includes Birdies Bread, Ratinuad, Edible Earth Farm and loads more, with a link through to each business.

Norbert’s Good Food
Norbert’s Good Food “self-contained” storefront is open Saturdays at the Seaport Farmers’ Market. You are also able to order a local food box which can also be picked up on Saturdays. To get on the list to purchase a box, text your email to 902-790-3301.

Noggins Corner Farm & Taproot Farm Organic
If you’re looking for your dried-apple hit and other veggies from Taproot, there is home delivery available in HRM ($15 delivery charge). The Taproot CSA is also available for new members for a weekly fruit and vegetable box. Go to their site and choose the Farm Shop menu item for options.

River View Herbs
The beloved, 12-months-a-year herb grower has partnered with Maritime Gourmet Mushrooms, Roma Cheese and Swooping Swallow Family Farm to create CSA boxes for ordering. Eggs are also available. Orders need to be in by Friday at 8pm, and can be picked up Saturday at the Barrington Street Superstore parking lot (1075 Barrington Street) from 11am to noon, and 12:30-1pm at Sunnyside Mall in Bedford (1595 Bedford Highway).

The Warehouse Market
A joint venture between Afishionado Fishmongers, Abundant Acres Farm and Holdanca Farm, this north end mini-market at 2867 Isleville Street has all your fridge needs including our favourites, oysters! As it says: “We are uniquely positioned to be able to offer home deliveries and pick-ups of some of the best products the province has to offer.” The Warehouse is open Tuesday to Friday for home deliveries, as well as pre-purchased outside pick-ups and socially distanced shopping at the warehouse.

About The Author

Christine Oreskovich

Christine is the Publisher and owner of The Coast. She was one of the founding members of the newspaper in 1993 and has spent her whole career publishing for a Halifax readership. Christine is responsible for the business strategy, community engagement and overall publication sustainability.

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