Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Geography & Environmental Studies


Faculty of Arts

First Advisor

Russell Muncaster

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


Farmers' markets have traditionally been outlets for a variety of everyday food items, many sold by local farmers. Today, many markets have changed from their original function, and now offer a variety of goods to a wider variety of people both demographically and geographically. In the Kitchener-Waterloo area, three farmers’ markets exist, the Kitchener Farmers’ Market, the Waterloo County Farmers’ Market and the St. Jacobs' Farmers Market. These markets, identified as recognisable farmers’ markets (Tunbridge 1992), differ from other market typologies including traditional markets, public markets and festival market places. Though broad in nature, farmers’ markets can be broken down into further groupings based on social-economic indicators as exemplified by the market patrons. This thesis examines market differences using a customer survey administered at these three markets in November 1993. From this investigation the following market characteristics were found. The Kitchener Farmers’ Market has evolved from a traditional public market to a redeveloped, regular downtown farmers’ market, attracting a primarily localized customer base who patronize the market as part of a regular shopping trip. The Waterloo Farmers’ Market, a contemporary, urban fringe farmers’ market, serves a similar function to the Kitchener Market but draws a regular customer base from Waterloo and the surrounding rural areas. Lastly the St. Jacobs’ Farmers’ Market, a day-trip recreational market, attracts a customer base from a wide area, offering goods of both a farmer and flea market nature, including a weekly livestock auction. The typicality of these inter-market differences are vis-a-vis other market locations.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season


Included in

Economics Commons