Farmers' market coming to downtown mall in February

Dave Stewart
Published on January 26, 2014

Christina Van Looveren, general manager of the Confederation Court Mall in Charlottetown, says the mall will be opening its Urban Farmers' Market on Feb. 13.

©Guardian photo by Heather Taweel

The Confederation Court Mall is cooking up new opportunities with local artisans and farmers as the ingredients.

The mall will launch its own Urban Farmers’ Market on Thursday, Feb. 13.

The market will be located in the food fair on the second level of the mall and will be open every Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. year-round.

It will consist of vendors who will be offering fresh, local meats and vegetables, honey, herbs, gluten-free goods, organic soaps and will also include a couple of artisans.

Each vendor will have their own green-lined canopy market stall which will give the food fair the look of an actual market concept. The stalls are also weather proof should the mall decide to take them outdoors.

“We have about 10 vendors signed up with us,’’ said Christina Van Looveren, general manager of the mall. “We’ll also have Stars for Life . . . selling items to raise money for their good cause.’’

Stars for Life is a foundation for autism that provides education, creates businesses and builds homes where aging parents will know their children will live happily and safely beyond their own lives.

“We’re aiming for a little bit more fresh and healthy market. Everything will be locally produced and the market will present all three counties of P.E.I.’’

Van Looveren says their farmers’ market is open on Thursdays and Fridays to avoid competing with the one on Belvedere Avenue that operates on Saturdays and the Queen Street version which runs each summer on Sundays.

“We also located downtown with a lot of offices around. It’s good to reach that crowd so they can shop during their lunch hours or after work. We’ll probably be adding another day in the summer when the cruise ships come in. We do a lot of traffic (in the mall) from the cruise ships.’’

Van Looveren, also a manager with mall owner Dyne Holdings, says it’s a new direction for the business.

“I know the markets are getting popular everywhere across Canada and in Europe as well. It’s a good opportunity for the local farmers to have more options to sell. It’s a good opportunity for them . . . for the businesses around to get fresh produce . . . for the mall to have a little bit more traffic. It’s beneficial for everybody.’’