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Beloved Jo’s Juice squeezes last orange at Old Bus Depot Markets

Lachlan Roberts 11 July 2019 210
Josip Sladic

Josip Sladic served his last orange juice at the Old Bus Depot Markets on 30 June. Photo: George Tsotsos.

He has been a mainstay at the Old Bus Depot Markets for over two decades but Jo has poured his last juice at the popular weekend destination in Kingston.

Nearly 25 years ago, Josip Sladic set up Jo’s Juice at the markets, totally unaware of how successful his little stall would turn out to be.

“I was doing all the markets around town back then,” Mr Sladic shared. “The Old Bus Deport Markets was an undercover venue and the owners were lovely ladies so I decided to put a stall in. It was a way to make a living and to provide something that is real.

“You can’t get more real than juice from the fruit. I really enjoyed the social side of it and interacting with customers and it was a really pleasant experience.

“All the old stalls are leaving one by one and being replaced. All things must come to an end eventually I guess.”

Jo the orange juice guy

Sladic: “All things must come to an end.” Photo: George Tsotsos. 

The decision to leave wasn’t of his own making as the Old Bus Depot Markets’ new owners decided not to renew his lease. It might have left a sour taste in Mr Sladic’s mouth, but the news has brought an outpouring of love from the customers that have become his friends.

“I am a local Canberran for more than 20 years and coming to the markets is part of my life. There have been stall holders there for as long as I have been going,” loyal customer Charnelle said.

“These stall holders become friends and are the very fabric of the place. The value of people and the love and care they put into their products and services is what has made the markets what they are.

“I enjoyed my last glass of spiced apple and I cried a little when I finished it. I gave Jo a hug and told him how much he meant to me.”

Jo during happier times. Photo: Supplied.

Ken said his family travels from Wollongong on a regular basis to sample Jo’s delicious mulled wine while Eloise said Jo’s Juice stall was one of her main reasons for coming to the markets.

“I have been a regular visitor to the old bus depot markets for several years – and the thing I look forward to most (and a driving force for me to actually visit) is either an apple cider or lemon honey and ginger drink from the OJ store,” she said.

When queried, a spokesperson for the Old Bus Depot Markets told Region Media that the markets regularly reviewed its arrangements with vendors to ensure they offer visitors the best possible products and experience.

“The Old Bus Depot Markets has enjoyed a wonderful working relationship with local and regional vendors in the Canberra community for over 24 years,” the spokesperson said.

“While the Old Bus Depot Markets does not comment on specific business operations, more broadly, when managing the vendors the Old Bus Depot Markets considers legal obligations and regularly reviews its arrangements with vendors to ensure we offer our stallholders and visitors the best possible products and experience.

“We are sure Jo enjoyed his last market day on Sunday the 30th of June. We wish Jo all the best with his future endeavours as we are sure he will be moving on to bigger and brighter things.”

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210 Responses to Beloved Jo’s Juice squeezes last orange at Old Bus Depot Markets
Dan Rolfe Dan Rolfe 7:19 am 14 Jul 19

Shocking. Sounds like it's all going downhill rather rapidly

Michelle Hoare Michelle Hoare 7:28 am 14 Jul 19

No way! Love Jo’s Juice!

Michaela Field Michaela Field 7:30 am 14 Jul 19

Sarah Franklin no more delicious juice 😞

    Sarah Franklin Sarah Franklin 7:31 am 14 Jul 19

    Michaela Field nnnnooooooo! It was guaranteed to be amazing every time

    Michaela Field Michaela Field 7:32 am 14 Jul 19

    Sarah Franklin yup the main reason for going to the market is now gone

Lyndon Zoukowski Lyndon Zoukowski 7:30 am 14 Jul 19

WT... Poor form on the organisers

Bianca Cotter Bianca Cotter 7:30 am 14 Jul 19

Go to Hall markets mate prob save some money on their ridiculous rent anyway

Michelle Wright Michelle Wright 7:32 am 14 Jul 19

Nathan Wright 😱 my fave juice

Jess Bennett Jess Bennett 7:38 am 14 Jul 19

Taysha Morrissey I’m heart broken

Nerrida Hall Nerrida Hall 7:40 am 14 Jul 19

typical of markets in canberra. OBDM are rubbish anyway. the juice was one of the main reasons to go.

should go to saturday and sunday farmers markets. they look after their stallholders and dont charge a bomb for stall space.

    Kate Carey Kate Carey 7:49 am 14 Jul 19

    Nerrida Hall absolutely! He would be a hit at the Farmer's Markets.

    Kate Cuthbert Kate Cuthbert 8:05 am 14 Jul 19

    TBH, the juice is really the only thing we ever bought from there lol

    Nerrida Hall Nerrida Hall 8:06 am 14 Jul 19

    Kate same plus a little fresh produce

Christine Ellis Christine Ellis 7:45 am 14 Jul 19

Used to get vacuum flasks of the lemon and ginger so we could dose up during winter. Very sad day

Chanelle Fyve Chanelle Fyve 7:45 am 14 Jul 19

The juice is one of the main reasons I go. 😢

Emily Carters Emily Carters 7:47 am 14 Jul 19

Zachariah 😭😭😭 no point in going anymore.

Karl Carmona Karl Carmona 7:50 am 14 Jul 19

Kristal Bernardino Samsonthis the reason why we couldn’t get our mulled wine last weekend.

Kate Carey Kate Carey 7:51 am 14 Jul 19

OBDM's best days are far behind it. I popped in after visiting that overhyped plant sale next door a while ago, and remembered why I don't bother any more.

Rosemary Castle Rosemary Castle 7:57 am 14 Jul 19

Very disappointing.

Chérie Clark Chérie Clark 7:59 am 14 Jul 19

Joshua Mcdonald no more fresh OJ 😭

Rebecca Van Der Werff Rebecca Van Der Werff 8:01 am 14 Jul 19

Boooooooo 👎🏼

Anne Orman Anne Orman 8:02 am 14 Jul 19

This is terrible! we dont go there often now as it is all overpriced and nothing special! Hearing this sort of thing makes me think its all about increasing the markets revenue rather than making it an enjoyable experience for market-goers!

Sarah Sparrow Sarah Sparrow 8:09 am 14 Jul 19

Nooooo Justin Sparrow Annie Severn the hot mulled wine and cider guy 😭

    Annie Severn Annie Severn 8:26 am 14 Jul 19

    Sarah Sparrow sad news. It was my favourite stall at the markets

    Ruth Hodgett Palavestra Ruth Hodgett Palavestra 9:41 am 14 Jul 19

    Oh no! What are the owners thinking? This stall was the only one to have always long lines of people who patiently waited in good humour for their drink. I never went without a cup of the hot cider. I seriously doubt the owners did survey the visitors before making their decision because there wouldn’t have been anyone who agreed the markets didn’t need Jo. Another reason to stop going to the markets since the quality began to drop a couple of years ago- I didn’t realise it had been sold off as a private business, but now it makes sense. What was an organic piece of Canberra has become a sterile merchandising operation.

Sarah Sparrow Sarah Sparrow 8:09 am 14 Jul 19

Nooooo Justin Sparrow Annie Severn the hot mulled wine and cider guy 😭

Tamara Murdoch Tamara Murdoch 8:10 am 14 Jul 19

Was devastated last weekend when I saw he was gone! Hot apple cider from his stall was what I looked forward to most. Hoping his stall pops up somewhere else.

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