27 September 2023

Spend a morning at Canberra's oldest markets: the freshest local foods and more

| Morgan Kenyon
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Fresh fruit and vegetables in indoor market

The Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets have been a beloved institution in Canberra for more than 50 years. Photo: Ben Calvert.

A little over half a century ago, local farmers and producers from around the ACT started coming together to sell their goods at an unassuming location in Canberra’s east.

While they remain a weekend staple, Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets have evolved a fair bit since their inception, welcoming a variety of retailers and service providers to what began as a humble gathering of fruit, seafood, meat and vegetables.

One new addition is UBX Boxing + Strength gym. Opened by coach and co-owner Marie Anagnostis’s last year, Marie says her clients now make the market part of their morning routine.

“You no longer just drop in, grab your fruit and veg, and drop back out again. There’s a lot more to do,” she says.

“Our gymgoers will finish their morning workout, head downstairs to grab a coffee and some groceries, then peruse the niche market and catch up with familiar faces before they head home.

“They’ve done a wonderful job of modernising and broadening their horizons while preserving a really warm, old-school vibe. It’s attracting a brand new audience and keeping them here longer.”

The market boasts a diverse range. Here are just some of the goods on offer…

Teacher’s Pet Treats

Australian made and 100 per cent natural, Teacher’s Pet Treats for dogs are designed to keep four-legged friends happy, healthy and oh so occupied. With a range to suit a variety of ages, sizes and needs, this market stall is sure to bring Canberra’s dog people to Fyshwick in droves.

Book Lovers Lane

An initiative run proudly by Lifeline Canberra, Book Lovers Lane sells books, DVDs, CDs, puzzles and more, with all proceeds going to local crisis support. The store also accepts clean, good quality donations on weekends, from 10 am to 2 pm.

Kismet Toys and Gifts

Handmade. Organic wool. Natural dyes. Ethically made. Eco friendly. This stall inspires buzzwords galore. Kismet Toys and Gifts are lovingly designed in Melbourne and brought to life in Nepal, providing a fair wage for the artists and their communities.

Farm Fresh and Ziggys Fresh

These guys have been at the markets since the very beginning. Farm Fresh and Ziggys Fresh are both family-owned businesses with a long history of sourcing from local producers and market peers from Melbourne and Sydney. Staff are known for being friendly, knowledgeable and always happy to help customers carry a heavy load to the car.

Piccolo Market Coffee

Piccolo Market Coffee entered the Fyshwick market scene in 2018. The business shows great commitment to the local life through its rotating coffee menu, retail coffee beans and intimate selection of treats, offered exclusively through Piccolo’s partnerships with regional suppliers.

Coco & Rye

The Coco & Rye Artisan Bakery & Cafe became a popular stop for its traditional hand-crafted sourdough, but it was its perfectly cooked donuts that got Canberrans truly hooked. It’s not just treats though – bacon and egg rolls, toasted sandwiches and house-made soups are also on the menu.

Euro Deli

Euro Deli opened its doors in 2011. It quickly introduced an enviable spread of homemade European goods to the markets, including chevapi, pljeskavica, smoked sausages, cured meats, specialty cheeses, antipasto, traditional sauces and more.

Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets are open Thursday to Sunday, 7 am to 5:30 pm. Visit Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets for a full list of stores, market news, recipes and more.

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