She has a long list of niches that can be filled.
“Specifically, we are actively seeking locally farmed fish, Cornish Game Hens, herbal teas, wine, beer, and spirits, flour seeds, nuts, oil, fresh ginger and vinegar,” Weir said. “We do not have fresh mozzarella or cottage cheese. Fresh or dried pasta may do well here. In the artisan arena, utilitarian wooden bowls, a basket maker, or a weaver could find a place here.”
Out of all these gaps, Weir said she laments the lack of a fish farmer the most. “I’ve even tried to talk my daughter into starting a fish farm,” she said, laughing. Arctic Char and Tilapia are both types of fish that lend themselves successfully to being farmed in this area.
Several components factor into increased consumer interest in the Farmers’ Market.
“We’ve recently had vendors selling stored produce as well as frozen produce from the summer months,” Weir said.
Additionally, the focus on root vegetables has had a marked effect. Weir stresses her efforts to get organic milk sold at the market.
Saturday’s Market during the Winter gets less traffic than summer, but vendors like Daniel Byler, from Mountain View Dairy in Richfield Springs, still find it well worth the effort.
“It’s a little slow here sometimes in the winter, but we try to be here for our regulars,” he said. “And, I make almost all my contacts here to sell my cheese elsewhere, like local restaurants and shops. We sell to the Origins Cafe here in town. I also get to network with other producers and get to know my customers.”
Paul Deysenroth, of Byebrook Farm in Bloomville makes a similar claim.
“I come here for my regular customers,” he said. “They can come buy at the farm, but I like to maintain a presence in the Farmers’ Market too. I’m too busy during the summer with crops, so we just come in the winter. This year has definitely picked up from last year.”