City of Toronto Hosts 11th International Public Markets Conference this week and Announces Public Market Week

2023 June 8

Today marks the beginning of the 11th annual International Public Markets Conference in Toronto. The event is co-hosted by the Project for Public Spaces, the City of Toronto, St. Lawrence Market and market advocacy organization marketcityTO.

Over the next three days, the conference will bring together more than 300 leaders in the public markets space from across the globe. As the host city for this year’s conference, City staff and public market partners will showcase Toronto’s extensive market city while creating a forum for international partners and colleagues to innovate in the areas of public health, community development, food systems and social policy.

Additionally, as a commitment to increase awareness about Toronto’s informal network of over 100 diverse markets, Deputy Mayor Jennifer McKelvie is proclaiming Sunday, June 11 to Saturday, June 17 as Public Markets Week. Public Markets Week is an opportunity for the City to share public market stories and celebrate the farmers, food producers, chefs, small businesses and entrepreneurs that work to increase food access, create economic opportunities, and foster social connections at neighbourhood levels.

This week, the City and its host partners will leverage the International Public Markets Conference to:

• Showcase, promote and educate attendees about the role of public markets in inclusive local economies.
• Celebrate market managers and vendors, especially Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) leaders, advancing incredible work in the neighbourhoods impacted by marginalization.
• Work towards and announce the adoption of the Toronto Public Market Strategy and declare a Public Market Week to promote all public markets across Toronto
• Advocate for more resources and better policies for public markets.
• Build local capacity, identify barriers and find ways to remove them to increase participation in markets and provide leadership opportunities, especially for BIPOC market managers and entrepreneurs.

Conference attendees will have the opportunity to experience how Toronto is addressing these challenges through a range of in-person workshops, events and tours. Key events at the Conference include:

Thursday, June 8

Event: Opening Plenary
Location: St. James Cathedral, 106 King St. E.
Time: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Event: Market Lunch
Location: St. Lawrence Market, South Market patio, 91 Front St. E.
Time: 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m.

Event: Opening Reception in partnership with Underpass Park Farmers Market
Location: Underpass Park, 29 Lower River St.
Time: 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Saturday, June 10

Event: Closing Reception
Location: Stackt Market, 28 Bathurst Street
Time: 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.