CBC Marketplace has caught vendors at farmers’ markets lying that they grew the produce they are selling.
They were caught on camera buying produce at the Ontario Food Terminal in Toronto, removing it from packaging and putting it in baskets and bushel baskets so it would look like they had grown and picked it on their own farm.
Ontario Agriculture Minister Jeff Leal said his ministry wants to ensure integrity and investigates if and when it receives complaints.
While some shoppers may be misled, it’s common knowledge to most who frequent the largest one – the St. Jacobs Farmers Market – that there are many vendors who buy what they are selling, including some that stock up at the Ontario Food Terminal or at the produce auction market north of Elmira.
How else, for example, can they offer bananas, oranges and other fruits and vegetables out of season?
It is common for some farmers’ market vendors to supplement what they have grown with produce they pick up at the Elmira auction or buy from neighbours.