News Local

Corn Roast pops at Innisfil Farmers' Market

By Patrick Bales, The Orillia Packet & Times

The annual corn roast took place Thursday at the Innisfil Famers' Market. Coun. Stan Daurio, left, and Phyl McMillan were shucking what they said was the tastiest corn around.

The annual corn roast took place Thursday at the Innisfil Famers' Market. Coun. Stan Daurio, left, and Phyl McMillan were shucking what they said was the tastiest corn around.

INNISFIL - 

Thursday was one of the tastiest days of the season at the Innisfil Farmers’ Market, as the annual corn roast and artisans’ fair took place.

The market purchased the corn from the four local vendors selling at the market, and using the $1 per cob sold to put money back into its operating budget, keeping it self-succficient from the town, explained Christine Ayres, market manager.

Overall 2016 has been a good year for the farmers’ market, with vendors reporting their sales being up over last year.

“Our numbers have been down a little – maybe by about 100 – because of the heat, but people are still coming out and they’re buying,” Ayres said. “Our vendors are happy.”

But the heat and lack of rain have done a number on some of the crops those vendors are selling, including the very one the market was celebrating: corn.

This year’s season is “not the greatest,” admitted Emilio Spina of EFT Farms, located on the 10th Sideroad, south of Highway 89.

“This year, with the lack of water, the corn yields are down, like 50%,” he said. “Where we would normally get seven heads per stock, we’re only getting two or three.”

That means his profit on corn will likely drop by 75% this year. Not only will the season of his personally grown corn be shorter, he said he’ll look to purchase from other farmers in order to keep his customers fed past Labour Day.

“Normally we go right through almost to the 15th of October,” Spina said. “This is year if we make it through the middle of September...”

At Thursday’s market, Spina estimated he had approximately 60 dozen corn left. On a regular weekend, he could go through 10 to 15 bags, with five dozen in each bag.

He paused for a brief second, doing the math in his head.

“It looks like this weekend could be the last weekend.”

pbales@postmedia.com

@patrickbales