In 2013 The Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market engaged in a series of vendor and customer engagement sessions to determine the path we would follow as we began the process of creating a vibrant and sustainable Farmers’ Market. Having a clear direction is critical as the vision of an organization is a compass from which everything else is driven. The Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market has been in our community since 1750 and has served as a popular gathering place and a great shopping destination for many of Nova Scotia’s best local products.

Over the course of the year, we were able to incorporate several changes to the Market which were identified either through the engagement sessions, surveys or consultations, etc. such as:

  • New stairs
  • New main entrance
  • Mezzanine level standup bar
  • Community boardroom
  • Addressing HVAC concerns
  • Lunch and Learn sessions

The physical/structural changes to the Market will continue over the next several years. Improving the overall customer experience and vendor selling experience is a major priority that was identified during the consultation process. In terms of priorities for 2014, one of the key objectives will be to bring the Market back to its primary mandate.

The Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market is first and foremost a Farmers’ Market. We are a primary producers’ Market which means vendors who sell at the Market must make, bake, grow or catch what they sell, and the majority of what is sold in booths must be locally produced. We are a public space, a learning place and a unique venue where events happen. First and foremost, we are a destination for locals to enjoy and we are also a place that welcomes and appreciates the many visitors to our city.

The Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market objectives stem from this vision and the vision is what assists in defining basic goals. Defining this vision was a collaborative approach between the Halifax Port Authority, through market staff, vendors, customers and various community stakeholders. It is because of this collaborative approach that we can strongly say we are “making it your market”.

Bringing the Market back to its original mandate will result in additional changes at the Market this year. These changes will support the overall vision for the Market. They will be implemented in a transparent manner that treats all vendors equally. As responsible administrators, we owe it to you as vendors and to our valued customers that the quality and integrity of the products being sold at the Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market is beyond reproach. In the coming weeks we will be providing you with additional details; we are planning a vendor information session tentatively for the last week of March.

Julie Chaisson
Executive Director
Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market