The Trend Of Farmers’ Markets In India
Image Credit: DLF Artisanal Market HandpickedbyPC

With growing popularity if eating more organic and healthier, Farmers’ markets have slowly become the trend of the day. With fresh organic produce, or even homemade products, these fresh produces are attracting one and all. With concepts like plough to plate these markets are catching the attention. 

According to Manas Arvind curator and co-founder Gurgaon Organic Farmers' Market  says “The traditional Farmer Markets are being fast replaced by large stores, especially in the urban spaces. The weekly bazaars by farmers and traders are long gone. The new trend in Gurgaon is of large vends often disguised as Mandis. The farmer - consumer connection is totally broken. Around 7 years back a group of concerned citizens and organic experts got together to create a safe space for organic farmers to sell clean food. We worked on creating a focused and strong mandate and today GOFM is one of the largest Organic Farmer Market in the country. 

Though the concept haat has not been something alien to city people but this way to organise markets once a week specially on weekends that primarily focuses on sustainable or organic without any pesticide products is a very urban phenomenon. For the urban consumers these markets provide wide range of products from Ghee, Honey, grains and of course not to mention fresh vegetables. Puneeta Chadha Khanna, conceptualiser and curator of DLF Artisanal Market HandpickedbyPC says “When I moved to Gurugram in 2018, I felt there was a need for a place where the community could come together under the open sky, and reconnect with their food, and the people who make and grow it. I firmly believe that preservative and pesticide free food should be a natural choice and not an exception. We conceptualised this market to be a place where non-believers could taste and source an array of healthy options and make it their first choice”

These weekly markets have also been a good platform for many who would want to showcase their stuff. Mostly being organised in big open area be it a mall complex or some place like Sundar nursery  with much greenery these markets happen to be perfect platform to showcase stuff be it handicraft, food or more. Further adding Manas  says “Besides ensuring chemical free produce, it also is a plant based, and zero waste market. Each vendor confirms to a strict code of conduct, which includes a clause of transparency with customers. GOFM has been going on without a break since Nov 2014. We often get visitors and farmer groups from across the country who wish to start something similar in their city or just to learn about how a simple community project has positively changed the financial condition of organic farmers, health of people, and built immense trust between the two. At GOFM one can get over 100 varieties of fresh, 10 types of cold pressed oils, all possible millets, grains, traditional wheats, mushrooms, herbs, high curcumin haldi, artisanal breads, spreads, achaar etc. and moreover we encourage people to get their own bags”

The open-air venue works great and with these markets focussing in bringing small businesses in the forefront the Artisanal Market HandpickedbyPC also sees home chefs exhibiting regional Indian cuisines a Bansuri player and an old fashioned phirki wallah.  Her market is basically is all about where you buy everything you need for a week, directly from the people who make it or grow it , from vegetables to jams ,pickles ,masalas  to sausages,  bread and cheese . She adds that “We are delighted that Gurugram residents love to come and spend a day in a  market that they now  they call their own  in the beautiful ambience  of the Horizon plaza , listening to music and bonding with friends or family over and ice cream or a coffee.

These weekly market by design that aims at limited participation of both consumers and farmers is surely great idea to give urban life a taste of good products and sellers their right value.