This was the first time that the Ontario Food Terminal had opened to the public and the aim of the event was to:
- raise funds for FoodShare Toronto, a non-profit community organization whose vision is Good Healthy Food for All.
- raise awareness of the importance of the Ontario Food Terminal in fresh fruit and vegetable distribution
- promote the health benefits of eating fresh fruits and vegetables
Some Quick Facts about the Ontario Food Terminal
- opened in 1954 and is 40 acres in size
- is the only food terminal in Canada and is the third largest in North America
- the Terminal has 22 warehouse tenants, 50 office tenants, 400 Farmers’ Market tenants and over 5,000 registered wholesale buyers making use of the facility
- over 975,000 tons of produce was brought into the terminal last year which on average represents 5.3 million pounds of produce per day
- when compared to other food terminals around the world it is the only one with a wholesale Farmers’ Market on 10 acres on the same site as the traditional warehouse facilities
- the increasing demand for “ethnic produce” is met by either the local growers or by the importation of those vegetables
During the one-day Fresh Fest event, there were cooking demonstrations, a salad buffet, corn on the cob, face-painting, a mini Farmers Market and the chance to visit some of the wholesaler's spaces.
Paul and I definitely took advantage of the Farmers' Market. There were lots of local produce samples from the generous vendors (we ended up with a bag full of free carrots, beets, hot peppers and tomatoes), plus some great deals, like "fill a box" for $5. There were some gorgeous peppers and tomatoes and other incredibly fresh produce to be found.
We skipped the salad buffet (although it did look really good) and enjoyed some of the sweetest corn on the cob we've had all summer. Then we wandered through the wholesaler spaces to see all the produce (there were both local and international sellers) where we got samples of pomegranates, huge strawberries and yellow kiwi.
This was a great event and Paul and I had lots of fun checking out the vendors, fresh produce and wholesaler spaces.
The Ontario Food Terminal is definitely an important part of our food economy and I only wish we had the chance to shop here more often.
Check out the beautiful pasta dish Paul whipped up today with the fresh bell peppers and tomatoes we got from Fresh Fest.