Farmers Markets have been around for decades. They’ve grown in popularity over the past years, mainly because food education is one of the leading health and wellness conversations consumers are having at the moment. And the perks of these weekly gatherings reach far beyond the physical benefits.
By opting to purchase produce directly from farmers, as opposed to supporting food conglomerates, you are uplifting your local economy. You also get to interact with the farmers who is growing your radishes, turnips and spring onions. These conversations offer you peace of mind because grilling the agronomists about their growth process ensures you are eating organically and ethically grown food. In many instances, the fruits and veggies you buy end up being cheaper than what you get from the store too.
If you’re living in the City of Gold and looking for your local market, consider one of the following:
1. FOURWAYS FARMERS MARKET
This popular market boasts fresh fruits and vegetables grown by farmers that fringe Johannesburg. You can find anything from cured meats and creative preserves to seasonally grown produce to use in the kitchen daily. To make the most of each farmers’ time, and to get the best of their produce, visit on Friday from 3pm – 10pm and all of Saturday. Sunday is when the market becomes incredibly busy, and most of the stalls are full of artisans serving up paella, burritos, and cocktails for those wanting to put a festive end to their weekends.
2. BRYANSTON ORGANIC MARKET
The grandfather of the organic market scene, this one should be avoided if you prefer a small setting because it really is bursting with people rushing to and fro. The market has grown to include a number of different sections, but the area you’ll want to start at is packed with poultry farmers, producers of wheat-flour alternatives, and whole milk dairy producers. You can, quite literally, stock your entire pantry if you visit this market.
The central area of the market is decorated with tables to sit at and have a light meal. You cannot (I’ll say it again for emphasis) CANNOT leave without having tried the famous lemon meringue pie – one of my favored vendors who returns weekly to supply. You can pop in on Thursday s and Saturdays between 9am and 3pm for a few hours of foodie fun.
3. JOZI REAL FOOD MARKET
Mostly filled with ready-made nibbles, this market is a favourite because of the orange and ginger liquor distilled in White River that I tried and fell in love with. You might want to go because there are countless organically certified fruit and vegetable stalls to choose from. Farmers from Rustenburg tend to frequent this market because of its relative proximity to the Randburg location. You can also bring your pawed pets along as this market is dog-friendly.
4. BAMBOO FARMERS MARKET
Melville is a proverbial melting pot of the most bohemian personalities the big smoke can conjure up. The rooftop of Bamboo Centre plays host to the conscious foodies every Saturday morning through ‘til lunch. The market is a careful curation of vendors selling natural butters, heirloom seeds and plants, as well as a whole manner of herbs.
5. YEOUVILLE FOOD MARKET
Though some might caution you for venturing to this side of town, you’ll be glad you did. It is arguably one of the oldest food markets in the city and it spoils you with a whole manner of organically grown food naturally found on the other side of our borders. If you have an adventurous palate, African vendors fill the block with Congolese yams, cassava or cassava-made bread, foreign chillies, nut oils and other curious eats for you to try and fall in love with. I always go for my fix of matapas, which is a Mozambican peanut and cassava leaf curry.