The Kwantlen St. Farmers Market Opens with Social Distancing Protocols

The market, which has moved to a new location, is running in accordance with health and safety guidelines

Kwantlen Street Market, 2018. (file photo)

The Kwantlen St. Farmers Market will be open every Tuesday from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm between May 12 until Oct. 6. It’s also moving to a new location: Brighouse Park in Richmond, B.C.

The market will be encouraging social distancing and introducing new products.

“They’ve laid out a series of regulations that all farmers markets in B.C. must operate within, so it changes farmers markets a little bit this year,” says Anne Janzen from the Kwantlen St. Farmers Market.

The market will host vendors who sell both consumable and non-consumable items from fresh produce to baked goods and creative jewelry.

In order to maintain social distancing, only one customer is allowed at a vendor station at a time, according to Janzen.

“One thing that we have noticed is that because we are not an event, we are a retail food establishment operating under these current guidelines, [is] that people come to shop. There really isn’t lingering,” says Janzen. “A lot of markets have implemented a ‘shop, don’t stop,’ request and policy [to] keep people moving along.”

The vendor booths are being spaced out, and cones are used to guide lineups of people. They have also implemented one-directional traffic flow, and only 50 people are allowed in the market at a time including vendors.

Vendors who are feeling ill are asked not to participate, and booths are required to have sanitizer and paper towels available and to sanitize tables and tent poles throughout the day.

The market also encourages contactless payment options, and sampling of food is not allowed, according to Janzen.

In the past, the market featured live performances for customers. Janzen says that as restrictions begin to loosen this year, they may make a comeback.

“We’re really happy that we were able to work with the city of Richmond and the KSA to produce the market this year,” says Janzen.

“We’re really happy to be able to support the sustainable agriculture farm school … and support the students in all the hard work they’ve put in growing fresh local organic produce,” Janzen adds.

Janzen says that students who want to participate and sell some prepared goods can take a look at the Kwantlen St. Market’s website for information on what can be prepared at home and sold at the market. A discount is given to student vendors.

“We are eager to engage students if they would like to participate on a vendor level or whether they [want to] participate in a volunteer capacity. We’re definitely here to communicate with them and help facilitate any ideas that they may have,” says Janzen.