Come to the Comox Valley Farmers’ Market on April 30 and help them celebrate their 30th birthday. (Photo by William Jorgensen of 25th birthday celebration in 2017)

Come to the Comox Valley Farmers’ Market on April 30 and help them celebrate their 30th birthday. (Photo by William Jorgensen of 25th birthday celebration in 2017)

Comox Valley Farmers’ Market celebrates 30 years

It’s the Comox Valley Farmers’ Market’s 30th birthday.

Come out and join the vendors, rain or shine, for cake and celebrations on Saturday, April 30 at 10:30 a.m. and help them celebrate 30 years of bringing local food to local folks.

Over the last 30 years the Comox Valley Farmers’ Market has played a key role in incubating food production; growing farmers and food processors by providing them an affordable venue for selling and marketing their product direct to customers.

Hundreds of farmers, fishers, food processors and bakers have developed their businesses through the market and tens of thousands of customers have had the opportunity to support them by purchasing, tasting and giving feedback on their products. The CVFM has grown a local food movement that is the envy of urban centres (and their farmers markets) all over B/C.

Voted ‘Market of the Year: Large Market’ in 2014 (Saturday market) and ‘Market of the Year: Small Market’ in 2019 (Cumberland market) by the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets, the CVFM has earned the respect of its peers by staying true to the association’s mandate to, “Promote the economic health of the local farm and food community, provide quality locally grown farm products, educate the community in agricultural issues, and promote local agriculture.”

The Comox Valley Farmers’ Market is a food and farm market, and all vendors must make, bake, grow, raise and wild harvest their products in the Comox or Strathcona Regional districts.

In 1992 a non-profit association was created, and seven farmers gathered on the ‘market field’ at the Exhibition Grounds, to sell their produce to a few customers. Did they have any idea how much it would grow? Each year the CVFM now welcomes almost 100 vendors to its markets and thousands of customers every week.

Now a year-round Saturday market, and two additional weekly markets (Downtown Courtenay on Wednesdays and Cumberland on Sundays) in peak harvest season, the CVFM is bringing fresh healthy whole food to the people of the Comox Valley and beyond.

“We’ve developed partnerships with local musicians, local businesses, the North Vancouver Island Chef’s Association, we invite community groups and non -profits in each week to educate/inform/promote their projects and events,” said general manager, Twila Skinner, in a press release.

The association is also giving out annual ‘New Farmer Bursaries’ to support new farmers in their first years of production.

“We also participate in two Nutrition Coupon Programs that provide access to vegetables, fruits, nuts, eggs, dairy, cut herbs, meat and fish to families and seniors in need,” added Skinner.

“We could not have made it this far without the support of our community, customers Comox Valley businesses and local government. We look forward to bringing you many more years of fresh, delicious and nutritious local food. Come help us celebrate.”

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