Put simply we operate markets that enable farmers to sell their products to the public so that they get a fair price for their work, but there is a little bit more to it than that....
London Farmers' Markets seeks to increase farm incomes, and provide high quality local /seasonal foods to urban communities. We encourage sustainable methods of food production. We support traditional animal breeds and heritage fruit and vegetable varieties. We encourage Londoners to take a greater interest in food production and rural issues. We provide advice to farmers about what to grow, how to grow it, and how to market local produce.
The markets put you the customer in direct contact with the farmers, fishermen, growers and bakers. Every week, car parks, school playgrounds and town squares blossom into communities where you can meet your neighbours, swap recipes and fill your shopping baskets. If you want a farmers' market in your area and have a suitable location in mind, get in touch and we might be able to help.
We manage every aspect of the markets from their conception to the daily running. We are very hands on, often at markets helping out. Our producers come from within 100 miles of the M25. They must raise, grow or bake everything they sell. We allow no middlemen at our markets, and have very strict rules about attendance.
All of our markets are Certified by FARMA (the Farmers’ Retail and Markets Association). Our strict rules and high standards guarantee that Londoners are buying food from the farm and not a wholesaler.
Many farmers have cut out the middlemen and no longer sell to supermarkets. On top of this, many farmers have established links with restaurants and other food outlets in London, selling to them directly. The markets provide the hub to make it viable to drive to London. Farmers can then sell at market and deliver to retailers. We estimate that at least 50% of our farmers would not be in business if the London markets had not opened.
Cheryl Cohen has been working with London Farmers' Markets since March 2000. She has a passion for markets, goes out of her way to find them, and takes an active interest in the politics and the every day decisions concerning what and how we eat. Named by the Evening Standard, Queen of Markets, she is a board member of London Food and FARMA.
Mark Handley has been working with LFM since January 2000, starting as the Notting Hill farmers' market manager. He has a keen interest in the financial workings of the local food sector and what makes a market succeed. He believes in increasing the public's awareness of food and encouraging more farms to sell direct. He is a board member of FARMA.
Arthur Betts joined London Farmers’ Markets full time in 2007 after managing a few different farmers' markets. He has an interest in food security issues, both in this country and abroad, and regards the localisation of supply chains as an important way to create a more equitable and humane food system. Arthur has an MSc in Food Policy.
Nina Planck was living in London when she founded London Farmers' markets in 1999. The daughter of Virginia farmers, she is the author of The Farmers' Market Cookbook, Real Food: What to Eat and Why, and Real Food for Mother and Baby. She was Director of the New York City Greenmarkets, the largest network of farmers' markets in the US. She also created the Mount Pleasant Farmers' Market in Washington, DC. Nina lives in New York City with cheesemonger Rob Kaufelt and their three children.
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