St. John’s Farmers’ Market

About: Market of local farmers, producers, makers and community in the Northeast Avalon
Available At: 245 Freshwater Road
Tel: (709) 221-7536

The St. John’s Farmers’ Market is the Saturday and Wednesday go-to destination in the capital.  Veg, bread, meat, coffee, yoga, gifts, treats, soaps, kids activities, plays, lunch – it’s all there in one glorious euphonic cacophony of community of buyers and sellers on Saturdays and Wednesdays at 245 Freshwater Road – the former Metrobus depot.

The St. John’s Farmers’ Market is a cooperative of vendors and consumers that works together to organize a weekly farmers’ market.  After a successful one-off farmers’ market in downtown St. John’s in 2008, the St John’s Farmers’ Market began running weekly markets, then incorporated as a nonprofit in 2010 – just in time to feed and fuel the 500-year-old city’s new ‘locavore’ demand!  Farmers and makers are at home here, and lovers-of-lovely-things find their weekly supply of fresh local produce, local meat and eggs, preserves, jams, jellies, home-made multi-ethnic foods, waffles, sweets, pastries, baked goods, breadstuffs, art, photography, painting, sculpture, jewelry, body care products, soaps, flowers, cheese and dairy products, fruit, berries, yoga classes, kid’s crafts and more!

Community and sustainability are the core of the St. John’s Farmers’ Market.  Joshua Smee, Chair of the Cooperative’s Board of Directors says, “If there are two words to describe why we exist, community and sustainability are them. Promoting local food systems can help us become more sustainable. The Farmers’ Market provides more options for locally produced foods while enabling local producers to earn. It helps local businesses and organizations come alive and stay alive. It creates a space for people to interact.”

The market offerings change a little bit every week with up to 65 vendors selling their wares (check out this vid from in 2011). The organization of it all happens through an elected board, one full time permanent staff member, a part time assistant manager, a number of casual staff and a great diverse team of volunteers – the Farmers’ Market makes a priority of working with New Canadians and students.

There are lots of exciting things happening for the St. John’s Farmers’ Market in the near future. In 2018, they opened the doors to their new permanent home in the City of St. John’s new Community Market, a renovation of the City’s former city bus garage on Freshwater Road. This new space has seven times the floor area of the former one, permanent stalls, a community kitchen, workshop space, and more.   The new facility has made it possible for the Farmers’ Market to extend their hours on Saturdays, run a Wednesday evening market, and sustain year-round operations.

”We want it to be a vibrant community space and a great addition into the neighborhood, the City and the Northeast Avalon,” says Josh.  “We’re looking forward to it!”