Wagga Markets declining

To market: Spout and About stall holder and Cobram farmer Maria Verduci - with helper Ashleigh Anderson, 9 - said buying produce at a local market kept Australian farmers farming.

To market: Spout and About stall holder and Cobram farmer Maria Verduci - with helper Ashleigh Anderson, 9 - said buying produce at a local market kept Australian farmers farming.

A space once buzzing with activity, chatter, bartering and community spirit is sadly diminishing. 

It follows a significant drop in stall numbers at farmers’ markets across Wagga. 

Sprout and About producers on Saturday said the local markets were struggling and there was much to fear if the decline was to continue. 

Stall holder and Cobram farmer Maria Verduci said many sellers could no longer justify the cost of a space at the Civic Centre Precinct and buyers often didn’t know they were on. 

“There are many benefits to buying at a market,” Ms Verduci said. “It’s keeping Australian farmers farming.”

Ms Verduci said the downsizing of the market was sad, as it was the best way to shop.

“You know you’re buying Australian,” she said. “Without farmers there’s no farmers’ market.”

Lake Albert bee-keepers Garry and Gloria Burgess said markets helped cut out the middle man so residents could see exactly where their honey came from. 

“This is a good market,” Ms Burgess said. “I definitely think buying local is more important now than ever.”

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