The Capital Region Farmers Market is still the original, the biggest and the best Canberra farmers market.
You could say it all started with a bunch of roses, and a clever bunch of Rotary guys.
Back in 2003 the Rotary Club of Hall took on a project collecting and selling viable roses from the Old Parliament House Rose Gardens upgrade.
It was a success however, around the same time one of the Rotary members was trying to sell his own vegetables.
A lot of hardships were faced due to the stronghold of wholesalers in Canberra.
So the members thought about to success of the roses and how it would work for vegetables.
This was a light bulb moment! since previous farmers market projects in Canberra had failed, but this seemed to be the right moment.
The droughts put an emphasis on the plight of Canberra and region farmers making wholesale arrangements turn inadequate and farmers just couldn’t sell through commercial means.
At the same time, many small producers were just starting out and needed an outlet.
A major analysis was undertaken inorder to determine the dynamics of farmers markets, and development plans were developed.
Meeting all requirements for suitability, capacity, amenities and all-weather infrastructure,
Exhibition Park in Canberra (EPIC) was selected to be the venue where the very first Capital Region Farmers Market was held in March 2004.
It was established without any financial support or grants from governments or other sources.
Capital Region Farmers Market started with just 15 stalls and around 500 customers.