Protect Local Food & Farmers

$6,996 of $63,000 goal

Raised by 171 people in 3 months
The seven local food producers who are fighting their expulsion from the Peterborough Saturday Farmers’ Market urgently need your help.

The Threat:

The Peterborough & District Farmers Market Association (PDFMA), the Not-for-Profit Corporation that governs the Saturday Farmers' Market, issued a resolution to evict seven local food farmers and producers from the Market.  The vendors under threat are:

·      McLean Berry Farm

·      Circle Organic

·      OtonaBEE Apiary

·      Gaelic Garlic

·      Chef Marshall

·      Necessitea Elixer

·      Finest Gourmet Fudge

The Board of the Market scheduled a special members meeting on January 8th to vote on the motion to remove these seven vendors, citing undefined complaints from other market vendors.

The reasons given for the eviction were unfounded; and the handling of this resolution was illegal.  The Board did not submit specific accusations, nor reveal the names of the accusers. 

The Response:

The vendors have said they don’t want this fight, but they have no choice except to defend their right to remain at the Market through costly legal action, for which they need financial support.  These vendors work hard all year to bring high quality local food to our Market and these threats have left them fearful and physically exhausted. 

How YOU Can Help:

With your help, we need to stop the illegal actions of the Board and protect local farmers.    

This fight is bigger than the rights of these seven vendors.  This is a fight for our community’s right to access and support local food producers and farmers.  By supporting this fund, you are exercising your right to demand a fair and transparent farmers’ market that maintains local livelihoods.  

We (the seven vendors) have been overwhelmed and deeply moved by the community support we have already seen, from the thousands of signatures on our petition, to the hundreds who came out for our rally on December 29th.  We greatly appreciate any donations that our customers and supporters can provide.  

Please share this funding campaign widely on your Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and by word-of-mouth to help us reach our goal of $63,000. Any funds raised that are not needed for legal costs will be donated to organizations within the community that support local farmers and local food.
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March 2, 2018

We have finally been given the go-ahead to speak. Our lawyers have confirmed the ‘gag order’ has been lifted, so we can share without fear of punishment.

Without hesitation our first message is a heartfelt thank you.

Thank you to the 19,300 people who joined our No Pink Slip Campaign - signed our petition, wrote letters and donated legal funds - to help us stop the senseless eviction of seven local farmers and artisans from the Peterborough Farmers’ Market.

With your remarkable support we were able to stop continuation of the Jan 8th Special Meeting and preserve our rights to sell at the market, at least for the time being.

The process to evict us was flawed from the beginning. Indeed, the eviction meeting confirms for us the brokenness of governance structures at the market. There is no way we could have succeeded without your support. This has been a true community effort and a victorious fight for local food and farmers.

All but one of the seven remain member vendors at the Peterborough Farmers' Market, but we will all continue to advocate for better governance, transparency/integrity in food source labelling, and more community involvement in the direction of the market. We have said from the beginning these are the things we want and we will continue to fight for them.

While we celebrate our victory, the events of the last two months have in fact compounded our concerns and fears, both for our own livelihoods and the integrity of the market.

Where the board has stated in the media that “the complainants and the accused are working [things] out among themselves", we have had no contact with the board and still await the names of our 16 accusers. As such, we have no ability to “work this out” together.

There are many unresolved issues that still need attention in order for farmers, artisans and all vendors and customers to feel safe and welcomed. We know it is possible, but we also know it will take a lot of work, self-reflection, dedication, cooperation, communication and good faith on the part of everyone involved.

The accusations against our group of seven remain unclear and unfounded, and we now fear the board will come after each of us individually with disciplinary action and eviction. As you know, one of the seven accused has already been ousted since cancellation of the Special Meeting. We are afraid to see who might be next.

We didn’t want this fight. We want to grow and share food with our community and feel confident our place at the market is safe. We want to be able to promote ourselves as verified local farmers from the Peterborough region.

We never thought as farmers we’d have to defend ourselves at a farmers’ market, but we've been forced to stand up for our rights. We have accumulated $76,000 in legal defence fees just to protect our seven businesses from this flawed eviction process. We’ve raised $13,000, but the outstanding $63,000 is a frightening cost for us to bear, and with an uncertain future, this number could be higher. If you’re able to help with these costs, you can donate at our GoFundMe page here:

We need our community's support now more than ever. Please keep coming to the market. Please remain allies in our struggle to protect local food, working with us to make the best possible market and save this important community asset.

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Thank you everyone for your incredibly generous donations to our fundraising campaign so far. More information on our legal action will be posted soon. We are currently working out some of the details. Until then, thank you for empowering us to take this important step.
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Raised by 171 people in 3 months
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