• The truth about Wellington’s food markets

    by  • February 5, 2013 • Articles, Features, FishHead magazine • 2 Comments

    Wellingtonians love their weekend food markets – but do they realise that much of their fruit and veg comes not from the stallholders’ own soil but from a warehouse in Johnsonville?   

    It’s a clear, sharp-edged morning at Harbourside Market, where, in the shadow of Te Papa, the fruit and veg stallholders are doing a brisk trade in cauliflowers, capsicums, oranges and broccoli. This is, supposedly, one of the more intimate ways to buy food: outdoors, away from the sterile air of the supermarket, and with a vendor who has some kind of personal connection with their wares.

    And yet, at Harbourside, as little as one piece of fruit in five will have been grown by the person selling it; the rest is bought midweek from the wholesalers in Grenada North – and that food can come from anywhere in the country, or indeed the world. Not that there’s necessarily anything wrong with that. But it does raise the question of just what we think we’re getting when we reach our hand into that basket of broccoli.

    Read the rest of the article here: FishHead – The truth about food markets – Nov 2012

    Max Rashbrooke

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    Max is an author, academic and journalist working in Wellington, New Zealand, where he writes about politics, finance and social issues. Sign up to Max's mailing list.

    2 Responses to The truth about Wellington’s food markets

    1. August 10, 2017 at 6:49 am

      I hate to be pedantic, but Te Papa is west of the Harbourside Market, so there’s no way the market can be “in the shadow of Te Papa” in the morning. Maybe in the late afternoon. As a photographer, I notice these things…

    2. robert
      October 13, 2018 at 9:45 pm

      Well add that the fruit and veges are less expensive than the Duopoly called Countdown and Newworld/BigSave is a reason people also go

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