WHITEHORSE—The Fireweed Community Market Society will receive $250,000 in a multi-year agreement from the Canada-Yukon Growing Forward 2 program to continue its work in promoting Yukon-grown food and products.
“The Fireweed Community Market Society helps Yukon farmers sell their products and promotes local food production by increasing public awareness of Yukon-grown food,” Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources Brad Cathers said. “This funding will support continued market development and fulfills our commitment to provide increased annual funding for the Fireweed Community Market Society.”
The increased annual funding will support the: summertime Outdoor Market; year-round Yukon Made Store; 12 Days of Christmas market; Celebration of the Harvest event; and, a series of workshops. During the workshop series held in 2013, local experts shared information about food production, how to use local food in regular kitchen routines, and how to increase produce yields through proven gardening practices.
“Promoting local agriculture by supporting initiatives like the Fireweed Community Market is an important part of our efforts to increase local production of food and supports continued growth in this sector of the Yukon economy,” Cathers added.
For more information about the Fireweed Community Market Society visit fireweedmarket.yukonfood.com. For more information about the Canada-Yukon Growing Forward 2 Program visit www.emr.gov.yk.ca/agriculture/funding_programs.html.
Communications, Energy, Mines and Resources
The Fireweed Community Market Society (FCMS) was formed in 2005 with the expressed intent of promoting the production and consumption of Yukon products.
Since that time, strong community support has developed with over one hundred regular members and an increased awareness of local agriculture and locally produced foods, art and artisan crafts.
This has been done through FCMS hosting market opportunities for their members. The successful annual outdoor market is now a summer staple for Whitehorse citizens. The society extended the format into the winter with a series of successful Christmas markets. They also have an important and unique marketing opportunity for local producers through the year-round Yukon Made Store located in Shipyards Park in Whitehorse.
The FCMS has increased awareness about agricultural production in Yukon through frequent awareness campaigns, participation in other related events, as well as the production of the Celebrate Yukon Food: Seasonal Recipes Cookbook, the Farm Products Guide and Celebrate Yukon Food: Keeping the Harvest.
The FCMS goal is to provide a market for and to promote Yukon-made farm and locally handcrafted products. The FCMS is supported by a board of directors whose members are past or current Yukon food producers or who use local farm products to develop their own products.
Fireweed Market by the numbers
During the 2012 Outdoor Market season, over 75 members sold locally produced products. Of those members, over 32 per cent were local farmers or were selling a value-added farm or wild harvested product.
At the height of the 2013 growing season, it is anticipated that over 40 local vendors will be selling their products at the Outdoor Market.
The 12 Days of Christmas market was a sales venue for 54 vendors in 2012, with sales exceeding $180,000.
This year, the 12 Days of Christmas market will take place from December 11 to 22.