Calgary Eats! fall harvest bringing fresh local food to Calgarians
Get ready to eat, drink and cranberry!
Pick up your Thanksgiving feast ingredients at one of our pop-up farm stands throughout Calgary. Working with local farms, food growers and food distributors, The City is using pop-up farm stands to bring fresh, healthy, local food to Calgarians. This year, the pop-up farm stands, organized by Fresh Routes have expanded to three CTrain stations and eight community hubs around Calgary. The mobile markets are allowing residents to pick up fresh food while limiting their exposure to crowded locations.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic it’s been a challenge for some Calgarians to access affordable food,” says Lourdes Juan, co-founder of Fresh Routes. “We have stops around the city, including Sunalta LRT Station, The Alex Community Food Centre and Greenwood Village Dome N.W. each week. We’re able to bring fresh produce to those who may have trouble accessing food for a variety of reasons.”
The pop-up farm stands operate from Tuesday to Saturday, and will run until Thanksgiving on Oct. 12.
Improving access to healthy food options is an important part of Calgary Eats!, our Food Action Plan. “Bringing pop-up farm stands into community hubs provides Calgarians with another option for purchasing fresh cabbage, tomatoes, beets and other produce” says Kristi Peters, Food Systems Planner for The City, “It also provides our vendors with more opportunities to sell their produce.”
The markets have been incredibly successful, with many residents flocking to their closest locations to line up before opening. The local growers take great pride in providing Calgarians with a variety of local food options. “Being able to sell Calgarians delicious, locally grown food in their neighbourhoods has been a great opportunity for us,” says Paul Dejonge, owner of Broxburn Farm.
“We’re excited to collaborate with The City on expanding our pop-up market locations,” said Rod Olson, General Manager at YYC Growers Co-operative. The team at The City worked with them to find alternative locations within communities for their pop-up food markets. “With the start of COVID-19, The City responded quickly and we were able to open new locations to sell our locally grown fruits and vegetables.”
All market vendors are required to follow the COVID-19 Guidance for Farmers’ Markets and Public Markets provided by Alberta Health Services. When visiting a pop-up food market, please follow the social distancing measures that have been setup to create a safe experience for everyone.
To see the pop-up food market schedule or learn more about the program, please visit Calgary.ca/localfood. Our vendors are selling a variety of locally grown fresh foods that are perfect for a weekend barbecue.
If you’re an urban grower or local farmer who is interested in operating a pop-up food market, reach out to us! We’re always looking for new vendors to work with. The program application form can be found on Calgary.ca/localfood.