Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Too Many Farmers Markets?

I was talking yesterday with a vendor who sells at a number of local farmers markets in San Diego. I was marveling at how wonderful it is that the region now has 30 markets. People all over the County are increasingly being able to go buy their produce and other food products fresh from the farmer or artisan relatively close to home.

She, on the other hand, is not all that happy about this for a couple of reasons. New markets mean more markets she and her partner have to find a way to sell at. And, new markets mean a dilution of customers from already established markets as they peel away people who can now shop elsewhere.

So, I put it out there to the farmers market shoppers and to vendors/market managers. Do you think more markets are good or bad for you and the community -- and, importantly, why?

And, as I ask this, I'm also hearing talk that a group is being formed to look into creating a permanent marketplace at Liberty Station in Point Loma and that a marketplace (a la Pike Place Market in Seattle) is being considered in the development at the Old Police Headquarters at the Embarcadero. An embarrassment of riches if either of these come to fruition. This could also impact the vendors and the vitality of the community markets.

Weigh in please!

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