The BC Association of Farmers Markets (BCAFM), and their member farmers’ markets, have had to quickly readjust how they conduct business due to COVID-19. With over 145 members, they have played an important role in ensuring local food continues to be available to people across British Columbia and were deemed and essential service early on by the Provincial Health Officer. These markets continue to sustain the livelihoods of thousands of farmers and food and beverage businesses.
The BCAFM and Destination BC have partnered under Destination BC’s Co-op Marketing Program since 2018. The BC Farmers Market Trail website was created via the program to promote markets in all regions of the province. The website promotes the rich farmers’ market experience in each community and featured region, showcasing and celebrating local BC farmers and farms, food, beverages (including craft beer, spirits and wine) and value add prepared foods found at each community farmers’ market. The BC Farmers’ Market Trail serves as a hub for agri-tourism and culinary destination tourism in BC, and celebrates the diverse people who quite literally ‘Grow, Make, Bake BC’.
During these difficult times, this website has been key to promoting the launch, in a matter of weeks, of over 70 new online e-commerce farmers’ market stores in conjunction with their in-person markets across the province. Market organizers and vendors have diligently modified their farmers’ market operations on the ground to ensure physical distancing and implementing other health and safety measures for customers, vendors and market organizers alike. This successful model has served as inspiration and guidance to other jurisdictions across Canada. Thank you to the BCAFM and its members for the important work you continue to do.
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