As I walk down Isleville street, through Halifax’s North End, it’s quiet and familiar, however I come across a warehouse with the doors wide open. I peer inside… wait a second… there’s quite the buzz in there! People are coming and going, chit chatting, and buying fresh and local veggies, seafood, eggs, meat, and even kombucha! It’s the Isleville Warehouse Market, a recent addition to the North End neighbourhood. Afishionado Fishmongers, Abundant Acres Farm, Holdanca Farms, and Pop Culture Brew Co. came together with the aim of creating a space for people to access healthy and local food. Rather than compete directly with other local farmers, it was important to them to create a neighbourhood market that would bring the community together and support each other’s businesses.
Isleville Warehouse Market
It all began with Afishionado, fishmongers with a focus on sustainable seafood production, renting space in the building and recognizing the potential the space could offer, aligned with their multi-market approach. Justin Cantafio of Afishionado notes that it’s great to be “headquartered in such a vibrant and eclectic part of the city”. Joining up with Abundant Acres Farm, an organic and ecologically conscious vegetable farm, along with Holdanca Farms, specializing in pasture-raised free range meat and eggs, enabled them all to share their customers and create this alternative space.
Jen Greenberg of Abundant Acres said: “If food comes along with community, and people get a chance to know their farmer, it’s more likely they’ll choose and cook with this food.” And that’s precisely what I observe as I sit on the bench outside the market, absorbing the buzz. Greenberg greets her customers by name and chats for a while. People tell her what they’re cooking, ask for advice, and exchange recipes with each other. One customer tells me that she loves coming here, she can walk over after work and it’s so convenient. Another says: “I think I’m addicted!”. With neighbourhood support and a shared community, it feels like community shared agriculture in its true sense.
Dave & Jen Greenberg, Abundant Acres Farm
Cantafio described the market as a cornucopia of Nova Scotian seasonal harvest in your own backyard. Indeed, with a certified organic vegetable farm, whole grain bread, pasture-raised free range meats and eggs, kombucha, and sustainably-harvested seafood, it’s a delicious and healthy recipe for success. Plus, a recent addition has joined the scene! Now you can sip Italian coffee as you peruse the market, with the opening of Espresso 46’s coffee window next door. I wonder… what will be next?
The Warehouse Market is open Thursdays and Fridays from 11am-7pm and Saturdays from 9am-1pm.
Afishionado Fishmongers: https://www.afishionado.ca/
Abundant Acres Farm: https://abundant-acres.com/
Holdanca Farms: https://www.holdanca.ca/
Pop Culture Brew Co.: https://www.facebook.com/popculturebrewco/
Blog Written By: Sherry Stevenson, Research & Evaluation Coordinator, Our Food Project
Adventures in Local Food is your source for food news in Nova Scotia, from pickles to policy. It is a project organized by the Ecology Action Centre.
Learn more about our program at https://www.ecologyaction.ca/ourfood