Saturday, 11 May 2013

Stickey business!

We went out today to visit a nearby farmers' market, a term I use very loosely indeed.  Wakefield Farmers' Market is billed on the local council's website as "a highly attractive Farmers, local produce and craft market".

Well it's certainly the strangest farmers' market I've ever been to.  To my mind, the whole idea of a farmers' market is one which sells produce, be it fruit, veg, meat, dairy produce or anything else grown or raised on a farm.  Local produce should be exactly as the term implies, and crafts should be goods made by a crafts person or artisan.  The whole concept also suggests individuality, yet the stalls, and there weren't many (about a dozen), were all clad alike in the garish purple and green colours emblazoned with Wakefield council's logo.

With the exception of some gorgeous honey from a local bee farmer, sold under the lovely name "Stickeys", there was no locally farmed produce at all.  No fruit, no veg, no dairy, no meats.  A lot of the so-called "crafts" looked like mass produced items rather than hand made, individually created pieces, and all in all, the whole thing was a great disappointment.

Stickey's Honey - the one good thing at Wakefield Farmers Market
It seems like Wakefield's idea of a farmers' market is in keeping with their idea of an indoor market, which they changed from a lovely, if old-fashioned, indoor/outdoor traditional market into a newly built mess which allows only one of anything (no competition) and thus keeps prices artificially inflated.  Nothing like the fantastic markets at Leeds, Doncaster and Barnsley where the competition between traders is one of the things that makes visiting the markets so lovely.  Not to mention the wonderful array of produce which can be bought at them.

Wakefield?  Nil point, you have a very long way to go before you're on the bottom rung of the ladder other Yorkshire markets are on.

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