Saturday Morning Market Crawl: 15 must-see vendors

Each season at the Guelph Farmers’ Market brings something new and exciting, whether Google.Emblemit’s new vendors or the return of a beloved fruit or veggie in season. We have to be honest though, fall at the market just might be our favourite season of all. It’s the season of pumpkins and squashes and thanksgiving fixings. It’s a time to visit the market and share in the warmth of community with your friends and family. Check out our top 15 vendors below and visit us at the Market every Saturday from 7 a.m.-noon.

Thatcher Farms: This family owned and operated farm offers customers locally B0255D7E-C76B-490C-9112-E1FF50E1BB7F.jpegproduced meat products that are naturally raised, and that are hormone and additive free. Adam, a graduate of the Ontario Agriculture College and Dana, an elementary school teacher, enjoy farming and the lifestyle it provides for their family. Knowing where your food comes from and how it is grown is an essential ingredient when looking to buy fresh, quality, sustainable meats.  You can even support their children in their farming adventures, with their eldest daughter offering her own pasture raised chickens. Make sure you stop by and chat with Dana and Sophie, they are always happy to share recipe ideas and recommendations.

Strictly Organic: Marc and his family are a staple of the market for all things organic. Their produce is often piled high first thing Saturday morning, and you will often find it disappears quickly.  Marc always greats you with an easy smile and asks what he can help you with today. The colourful seasonal varieties they offer will inspire you to test out your hand in the kitchen. If you are looking for gluten free products, they also carry wraps, chips and popcorn.

Sun Ray Orchards: One of the newest vendors at the Market, Sun Ray has quickly become a market favourite with their tender fruits and baking.  Located in the Niagara area, Tammy and her family bring a taste of the region to our market with their peaches, plums and berries. You can take home any one of their jams, or even pick up a pie (or tart) for later. Their peach scones and apple chips are a delight.

5A69C06E-DD24-4F33-B94D-F0CE37F203F4.jpegRalph and Janet Ray: Ralph and Janet Ray have been longtime farmers at the Market. You can find them in the backlot, selling out of their blue truck with a home made banner, that Janet embroidered years ago, which reads “Growing you Fresh Vegetables since 1978”. You can always find fresh produce only in season on their table, as well as some of Janet’s wildflower bouquets from her garden.

Zocalo Farms: The youngest farm family at the Market, Beth and Seb are passionate 70E2BD7B-A597-4CF2-B7C3-114AE24A6FBE.jpegabout ecological farming and supporting their community. They specialize in seasonal salad blends, and also offer a wide selection of vegetables including carrots, garlic, onions, spinach, tomatoes, broccoli, asparagus, signature salad greens, squash, and more! They often hold workbees on their farm, and always encourage customers to learn about where their food comes from.

Brantview Farm and Cidery: There is nothing we love more at our Market then the sight of Farmer Jay greeting customers in the back lot with a smile and an offer of an apple to taste. Brantview not only has some of the best locally grown apples, but they also have a line of their own ciders which are a favourite amongst the market crowd. They often collaborate with their neighbours and have released flavours like strawberry apple pear and a hop cider. This year marks the family’s 197th harvest, and it is one of the best ones yet.

8C7D22F5-95F5-42C1-BC7E-B23D53C22E6F.jpegHeartwood Cider: We love a good cider, and luckily for us we have a few vendors at the market who do to! Val and Brent of Heartwood Cider want to create inspired connections between community, land, food and drink. Their farm uses traditional farm practices to raise pastured livestock as well as produce maple syrup, and grow an orchard. Passionate about regenerative agriculture, the farm reaches out to the community with workshops, seminars and workbees.

Walking around the market, the sights and smells often leave customers feeling hungry, and while we have many amazing prepared food vendors to choose from, we wanted to highlight just a few of our favourites:

Nice Cream N Waffles: They are a father and son team who specialize in all Vegan and Gluten Free foods.  Start your morning off at the Market by grabbing one of their sweet or savoury waffles, or pick up a mid market snack of their nachos. Make sure you ask where their ingredients come from, and they will happily point you in the direction of the farmers at the market that they source from.

IMG_E0091Rodolfo’s Rebel Foods: Rodolfo is famous in Guelph for his Chilean inspired dishes. His breakfast burritos are one of a kind, and his tacos are a go to favourite. You can bring home some of his homemade salsa, which always makes for a great gift.

Feng’s Dumplings: The smell of Feng’s Dumplings always entices customers as they wait in line for the ATM. These dumplings are a labour of love, and bring customers back each week. With vegetarian options, there’s a flavour for the whole family to enjoy.  We suggest bringing tupperware so you can save some for later (or just stock up on extra).

Taste of Craft: More Cheese Please! Jen of Taste of Craft is your go to foodie at the GuelphIMG_5867 Farmers’ Market. With a passion for food and a love of all things sustainable and local, they offer a curated selection of fine Artisan Cheeses and Sustainable Canadian Seafood & Fish. As a bonus, you can also ask Jen about any drink pairing from wine to beer, and she will have many suggestions for you.

The Grain Revolution: The name really says it all. Baker Dave is known for his breads (chances are you’ve had them at one of the many restaurants he supplies downtown) and his stand at the market offers everything you could want. From fresh baguettes to specialty bakes which feature and highlight ingredients from different vendors at the Market. Recently he has started to prepare sandwiches with all ingredients sourced from the market, and offers a true farm to table experience.

Your taste buds are in for a treat at the Guelph Famers’ Maket, but we also have a dedicated group of passionate artisans who create hand-crafted specialty items for their customers.

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LJ Turtle Aromatherapy: Lisa from LJ Turtle Aromatherapy is a must see at the Market. She has everything from allergy relief to Tick Spray for your furry friend. A clinical aroma therapist, she is here to support your throughout your day. Whether you are looking for a gift for a friend, or for something for you, Lisa has you covered.

Black Star Vintage: Margaret-Anne from Black Star Vintage has a passion for turning old antiques into beautiful pieces of jewelry. Every week there is a new creation at her table, and it is one of our go to stops to check out what new item she has restored or reimagined.

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Sage Soap Company: They are a local maker of handmade bath and skin products. All of their goods are plant-based and made with local ingredients where possible. You can ask Carly for any recommendations and she is sure to find something for you, or a gift for a special someone. For all of our customers out there with four legged friends, Carly’s Paw Wax is a go to favourite.

Join us year round every Saturday from 7 a.m.-noon. There are over 120 vendors at the market, and without a doubt the farmers are some of the most hardworking and passionate people we have ever met. We want to note that we have many seasonal farmers who visit us during the summer, and some who remain year round. While we could talk about our farmers endlessly, this is a just snap shot!

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