The Kimberley Farmers’ Market has been growing each year. Kimberley Farmers Market FaceBook.

Kimberley hosts Farmers’ Market conference this weekend

Farmers’ market vendors and organizers from across the province will gather in Kimberley to connect, learn and advance the local food sector with workshops, networking events and training

Beginning this Friday, March 8, the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets hosts its annual conference in Kimberley. The conference, titled Cultivating Community, runs from March 8 to 10, 2019 at the Kimberley Conference Centre with farmers’ market organizers, growers, small-scale food businesses, artisans and community leaders from across the province taking part in workshops and networking events to advance the local food sector.

READ MORE: Farmers Market conference coming to Kimberley

READ MORE: Launch of Kootenay Rockies & Columbia Basin Farmers’ Market Trail will strengthen relationship between farmers, markets, and market-goers

Taking the conference on the road for the first time in 20 years is partially due to support from the Columbia Basin Trust.

“We are thrilled to have our conference in Kimberley and be able to connect directly with the region’s farmers’ markets, vendors and community. This area is known as a hub for fresh local food and farming, and is home to over 20 of our BCAFM member farmers’ markets,” says Wylie Bystedt, BCAFM president. “The conference is a unique opportunity for farmers and market organizers from across the region and province to gather and address critical issues, such as regional marketing strategies and other sector needs, that individual vendors and markets can’t tackle alone.”

“Bringing this conference to the Columbia Basin for the first time is great for this region’s farmers’ markets as so many more will be able to attend and take away tools to continue strengthening their efforts,” said Johnny Strilaeff, Columbia Basin Trust President and Chief Executive Officer. “Fostering this opportunity for producers, processors and farmers is one of the ways we’re supporting agriculture businesses to flourish and grow, which enables residents to have access to healthy, local food.”

The conference includes over 15 workshop sessions that cover a range of topics from regional farmland matching initiatives, developing farmers’ markets in rural areas and assessing the profitability of farmers’ market businesses to starting farm marketing co-ops, social media storytelling, regional marketing strategies, and how farmers’ markets and food hubs can work together.

Speakers include Greg McLaren of Farm Food Drink, Josie Cale of the Ktunaxa Kinbasket Child and Family Services, Paige Dampier of Close to Home Organics, Hailey Troock of the Young Agrarians, Livia Lara of Cranbrook Farmer’s Market, Stuart Anderson of Community Futures North Okanagan and Belinda Ewald-Middleton of Destination BC. The conference and festivities are organized by the BCAFM in partnership with the Kimberley and Cranbrook Farmer’s Markets.

Highlights of the weekend include the sixth annual Farmers’ Market Awards Gala, which will feature a locally sourced dinner and recognize individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to BC’s farmers’ market sector and local food system. The top farmers’ markets, market manager, vendor, volunteer and community partner of 2018 will be honoured at the Awards Gala, Saturday, March 9 at the Kimberley Conference Centre.

Everyone is welcome to attend the conference or register for a single workshop or networking event. Tickets and information are available on the BCAFM website.

The BCAFM is a registered society that represents over 145 farmers’ markets across BC. Its mission is to develop, promote and strengthen the capacity of farmers’ markets in all regions of the province. Visit www.bcfarmersmarket.org to learn more or find a farmers’ market near you.

Just Posted

Kimberley RCMP report uneventful JulyFest weekend

Kimberley RCMP report a quiet JulyFest weekend, with no major incidents. Detachment… Continue reading

Newly renovated Casino of the Rockies officially re-opens

After months of extensive renovations, St. Eugene hosted a ceremony and re-opening of a space “in harmony with Mother Earth and our indigenous culture.”

GALLERY: 2019 JulyFest parade

It was a not-so-balmy 11 degrees and raining for the 2019 JulyFest… Continue reading

Four in custody after armed robbery, suspects linked to other recent crimes

Four people are in custody after Cranbrook RCMP responded to a robbery… Continue reading

Former Fernie Ghostrider re-signs with Vancouver Canucks

Josh Teves has signed a two-year contract with the NHL team

WATCH: JulyFest 2019

Bocce, soccer and longboarding all wrapped up into one ‘festy’ weekend.

B.C. removes personal limits for bringing home out-of-province alcohol

Previous relgulations placed limits on the amount of liquor that B.C. residents could bring home

Unsealed record suggests U.S. man convicted of murdering Vancouver Island couple left DNA on zip tie in 1987

William Talbott is set to be sentenced Wednesday in the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

Surrey court clerk files human rights complaint related to concussion

Deborah A. Ryane claims her employer discriminated against her on basis of mental disability

Food fight: Liberals, Tories trade shots as pre-campaign battles intensify

Health Canada released an overhauled document that did away with traditional food groups and portion sizes

Okanagan Air Cadet challenges gender-exclusive haircut policy

Haircut regulation inspires challenge around gender identity

VIDEO: Bystander training gains traction as tool to prevent sexual harassment, violence

Julia Gartley was sexually assaulted after an event, and no one stepped in to help

Two brands of ice cream sandwiches recalled due to presence of metal

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a recall on Iceberg and Originale Augustin brands

Sexual assaults, extortion on the rise even as crime rates stay low: Stats Canada

Rates of police-reported sexual assault rose for the fourth year in a row

Most Read