Celebrate fall harvest at farmers’ markets

Fall harvest is in full swing and local farmers’ markets are offering a cornucopia of fresh fruits and vegetables, along with tempting baked goods.

York Region is home to about 700 farms, which play an important role in the local economy as well as provide healthy food and resources. Many local farm families have worked the land for 150 years or more. York Region and York Farm Fresh have teamed up to highlight nine farm-to-market destinations you may want to visit before the end of harvest season.

Main Street Markham Farmers’ Market. Find fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables, baked goods and more while listening to live music. Open Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. until Oct. 6.

East Gwillimbury Farmers’ Market. Meet local farm vendors selling seasonal fruits and vegetables, breads and sweets. Open Thursdays from 2 to 7 p.m. until Oct. 4.

The Village Market in the City of Vaughan. The first organic farmers’ market in York Region (since 1991). Featuring local organic and biodynamic farmers. Open Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. year-round.

Aurora Farmers’ Market and Artisan Fair. Feast your eyes on local farm-fresh vendors and artisans. Open Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. until October.

Newmarket Main Street Farmers’ Market. A place to buy farm fresh produce, home-made baking, hand-made crafts. Open Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. through the end of October.

Hillcrest Farmers’ Market. Open for the past 12 years, this market offers local farm-fresh produce and eggs, baking, goat cheese, smoked meats, local honey and jams. Open Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. until October.

Simpson Family Farms. Although this is a family farm and not a traditional market, they are local vendors to many of the local markets. The family sells honey, potatoes, onions, carrots, beets and a variety of other seasonal vegetables. Open year-round. Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Pine Farms Orchard. Visit the bakery and café, or pick up some apples, honey or maple syrup. Open seven days a week, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., year-round.

Georgina Farmers’ Market. Featuring more than 30 local artists, artisans and vendors with a large variety of produce, meats and baked goods, it’s open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and closes for the season on Sept. 30.

Pick up a Farm Fresh map to discover and visit these and other local farms. Take part in the Passport to Fresh contest and meet local farmers. Use #PassportToFresh and #loveyr to share your adventures. Keep up-to-date on York Farm Fresh news by signing up for its newsletter here.

Founded in 2017, York Farm Fresh is a non-profit organization uniting farmers, farmers’ markets, small food processors as well as other stakeholders who care about food produced in York Region. York Farm Fresh exists to connect customers and community to York Region grown local food, beverage and products at farms, farmers markets and farm experiences by joint marketing, promotion and education initiatives with a goal to increase revenue for members.

In 2001, the region established the York Region Agricultural Advisory Liaison Group. In 2017. Today, there are more than 3,500 full-time equivalent jobs in primary agricultural production and 57,000 jobs in the full agri-food sector in York Region.

Image courtesy of York Region and York Farm Fresh.

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