Today, I have found in my mailbox a brochure restating some of Arlene Vanderbeek’s experience and past achievements in serving Dundas. This brochure also contains (on page 1) a list of Arlene’s goals and commitments – a “things to do” list in the event she is elected on October 27th as Councillor for Dundas. This list is professionally put together but quite traditional and there is no evidence of a new approach and “thinking outside of the box”. However, it contains a number of both needed and appreciated commitments.
To this list, I would like to suggest one more item. Throughout the summer season, Dundas is frequently hosting a Farmers’ Market located in the municipal parking lot on the east side of Miller’s Lane. When this project was first discussed, I remember reading about reviving a traditional market place idea where the town dwellers could buy fresh produce directly from the farmers, by-passing the warehousing, transportation and retail costs, the middlemen costs. and the overhead costs of regular distribution and retail chains.
Surely, buying directly from the farmer should be less expensive than buying the same products at the department store. This is how it used to be and it worked for all parties involved. Unfortunately, this is not the case, today. The farmers, who participate in this event, quickly caught up with the city prices and, in many cases, surpassed them. This being no different from buying at Fortinos, I wonder what the practical benefit of having this market in Dundas really is, aside from a unique show and a blocked parking lot. The only people, who benefit from this arrangement, are the farmers.