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PaulS's picture

Defying the recession - visitors to farmers' markets

Defying the recession - stats show visitors to farmers' markets rise

A HUGE increase in visitor numbers to farmers' markets in West Cornwall over the past year has been put down to a growing awareness of the benefit of buying locally.

According to West Cornwall Farmers' Market project statistics, revealed to The Cornishman last week, there was a 30 per cent increase in visits to farmers' markets in the former Penwith and Kerrier districts in the period leading up to March.

The startling rise in interest goes against the grain of recession-style scrimping and has been attributed to a growing desire to save on air miles, support the local economy and know the provenance of food.

Naomi Gorvin, who has run the award winning Sennen Farmers' Market since it began in May 2009, explained growing awareness, cheap prices and locality have been a powerful factor behind the meteoric rise.

"We have a really amazing local shop but other than that we all face a 12-mile journey to the nearest supermarket," she said.

"People have become far more conscious of air miles and supporting local businesses.

"Our customers like to know what they are buying but ultimately we offer really reasonably priced produce which is a common misconception of some farmers' markets."

In the first week of March 2010, 2,230 people visited the 11 farmers' markets across West Cornwall.

By 2011 this number had risen to 2,900 in a week.

This is the first occasion the project has been able to compare year-on-year statistics since it started 12 months ago with the aim of boosting the farmers' market trade in West Cornwall.

The demand for local produce has been so significant that three more markets will open this month in Constantine, Cury and Mullion bringing the regional total to 15.

Message

Development Officer Victoria Amran explained she believes the creation of a body formally representing the markets has had an impact on visitor numbers.

"I think the message is getting out there that the farmers' markets are there and do offer a good alternative," she said.

Full article here: http://www.thisiscornwall.co.uk/news/Defying-recession-8211-stats-market...

Actually, much the same is happening all over Cornwall.
Even our own little food market in Jacobstow has survived the Winter and is doing well