Agriculture is important too

Residents make the pitch for the Vernon Farmers Market and increased support

My wife and I have been farming in the local community since 1979. We raised our five children and supported ourselves from our farming income.

People would comment on how important farming and agriculture is and how we must protect the farm land for the future. We would sell our products wholesale and found we were always getting squeezed to lower our pricing until we finally had to start marketing our own products.

Through this process, we were introduced to the Vernon Farmers Market. When we introduced ourselves to the local community through this venue our business began to flourish and the market revenue became a considerable amount of our total revenue.

The Vernon Farmers Market began on what is now the Vernon Performing Arts Centre, 35 years ago. The market was started by local farmers and some of them, or their children, are there today. The regional district needed the property for the building of the performing arts centre and asked the market if it would move. The regional district explained that it was building a multi-use facility and this would become the permanent home of the Vernon Farmers Market. The market took a hit financially with the move since as we know, it takes time for people to change habits and this was the case with the market and their customers. However, the people of Vernon eventually embraced this new location and the market is thriving today.

There was talk of a second sheet of ice to be built down the road but not to worry because it would be located to the west on the Kin Race Track property and this would be the most feasible with the infrastructure of the current building and parking.

It appears the time has come for the new sheet of ice and it also appears that politically, the west option for the expansion is not going to work so the new sheet of ice will go where the Vernon Farmers Market’s permanent location is. The market appears to be the least important component to the city in this expansion.

The city is telling the market that it can have the back portion of the parking lot that is left over after the expansion is complete. This will be two-thirds the size of the current market. We still hear after 36 years how important agriculture is: buying local, protecting farm land and that children should know where and how food is produced. However, we see that this is just lip service when it comes to future planning.

Most communities have a fairgrounds or agriculture complex and the community grows up around it. This provides a community with a constant reminder of the way agriculture plays an important role in their everyday lives. This does not mean that farmers don’t support sports and sports facilities since many of them have children and grandchildren that take part in many sports including hockey. But we feel that agriculture should be just as important and should not be shuffled as though it weren’t.

We would like the City of Vernon to show how important agriculture is in our community by giving it as much consideration as a sports facility, arts centre, library or any other public facility. Anyone that has been to the market knows the value of it.

Our Vernon Farmers Market is an amazing market and we should all be very proud of it and do everything we can to protect it and keep it growing.

 

Joel and Rita Allen

Vernon

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tanya (Erin Ormond), Donna (Stephanie Roth, and Rosie (Jenni Burke), laugh together in this scene from a rehearsal of ‘Mamma Mia!’ at the Chemainus Theatre. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
BOOMER TALK: Laughter is the best medicine

Vernon columnist Carole Fawcett reminds us all to enjoy the funny things in life, it’s good for us

Toronto’s Mass Vaccination Clinic is shown on Sunday January 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Interior Health reports 2 more deaths, 83 new COVID-19 cases

Health authority also identifies new virus cluster in Fernie

Shuswap MLA Greg Kyllo will discuss concerns and goals the City of Armstrong has at a special meeting with council Thursday, Jan. 28, at 5 p.m. (Black Press - file photo)
Shuswap MLA to hear Armstrong concerns, goals

Greg Kyllo of the opposition Liberals will meet with Armstrong council Thursday, Jan. 28

Vernon’s Noric House long-term care facility is dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
COVID-19: Two more deaths at Vernon’s Noric House

Total deaths climb to 17 at local long-term care outbreaks

The Rice Box owner On Ouchs (right) is joined by special guest Driver Dispatcher delivery person Spiderman for a recent shift. Ouchs’ phone app creation, Driver Dispatcher, will be raising money for mental health Saturday, Jan. 30. (Facebook photo)
Vernon phone app helps mental health

Driver Dispatcher will donate $5 from every delivery Saturday, Jan. 30, to supporting mental health

British Columbia Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry addresses the media during a news conference at the BC Centre of Disease Control in Vancouver B.C. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
B.C. announces 485 new COVID-19 cases, fewest deaths in months

‘The actions we take may seem small, but will have a big impact to stop the virus,” urges Dr. Henry

Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News
Search called off for small plane that went down in rough water south of Victoria

Plane bound for Port Angeles from Alaska believed to have one occupant, an Alaskan pilot

Crown prosecutors have stayed attempted murder charges against Kelowna’s Jesse Pez. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
Man accused in Kelowna Halloween stabbing has attempted murder charge stayed

The Crown only proceeds with charges when evidence provides ‘a substantial likelihood of conviction’

RCMP released this photo on Jan. 27, 2021 of Terrance Jones, 40, a Caucasian man with a closely shaved head, brown eyes, dirty blonde or brown hair, and a thin mustache and beard. The inside of his right arm is covered in tattoos, including one of a face. (Kamloops RCMP photo)
RCMP want public’s help to locate Shuswap man wanted on charge of attempted murder

Sicamous man was arrested previously on Jan. 11 for allegedly breaching conditions of release

Royal B.C. Museum conservator Megan Doxsey-Whitfield kneels next to a carved stone pillar believed to have significance as a First Nations cultural marker by local Indigenous people. The pillar was discovered on the beach at Dallas Road last summer. Museum curatorial staff have been working with Songhees and Esquimalt Nation representatives to gain a clearer picture of its use. (Photo courtesy Royal BC Museum)
Stone carving found on Victoria beach confirmed Indigenous ritual pillar

Discussion underway with the Esquimalt and Songhees about suitable final home for the artifact

Former Vancouver Giants forward Evander Kane is seen here in Game 7 of the second round of the 2009 WHL playoffs against the Spokane Chiefs (Sam Chan under Wikipedia Commons licence)
Gambling debts revealed in details of bankruptcy filing by hockey star Evander Kane

Sharks left winger and former Vancouver Giants player owes close to $30 million total

Othman “Adam” Hamdan, pictured in front of Christina Lake’s Welcome Centre, was acquitted of terrorism related charges in 2017. He has been living in Christina Lake since November 2020. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Man acquitted on terrorism charges awaits deportation trial while living in Kootenays

Othman Ayed Hamdan said he wants to lead a normal life while he works on his upcoming book

B.C. Premier John Horgan wears a protective face mask to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 prior to being sworn in by The Honourable Janet Austin, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia during a virtual swearing in ceremony in Victoria, Thursday, November 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Premier Horgan calls jumping COVID vaccine queue ‘un-Canadian’

Horgan says most people in B.C. are doing their best to follow current public health guidelines

Most Read