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Market fresh food

Butch Dalton’s blood runs orange.

Since he was 13 years old, the local entrepreneur has been making orange juice at Oranges Only in the Fredericton Boyce Farmers Market – and thirty years later, he has no plans of throwing in the peeler.

“Back in 1984 . . . we just started out selling glasses of orange juice with my mom and things just [grew] from there. It’s become a staple in the community these days,” said Dalton, whose stall sells fresh, 100 per cent pure orange juice and fruit smoothies to its many thirsty customers every Saturday morning.

“We’re really proud of the fact that we’ve been at it for 30 years . . . [but] there’s more to it than a lot of people would think. There’s a lot more involved in running a business than just showing up on Saturday and making orange juice.”

Keeping a solid relationship with his legion of loyal consumers, for example, plays an integral role in the time-honoured business’s continued success.

“It’s really phenomenal. We have customers who have been buying our orange juice for 30 years, who remember when we opened back in 1984. Those longstanding customers really get you through the winter season when it slows down,” said Dalton.

“We just try and make orange juice the best we can, so we walk away every week [feeling] that we’ve done a good job, we’ve created a good product, our community has supported us and we’ve supported our community.”

It’s a feeling experienced by many of the Fredericton Boyce Farmers Market’s staple food vendors. Amie Palmer, co-owner of both Magzy’s Kettle Korn and Smashed Lemonade, knows it well.
Having taken over both businesses with her husband in April 2012, Palmer quickly learned what makes their unique products so special.

“Nobody else at the market sells popcorn. It’s a different, unique and fun product. We have people who come over the holidays every year who need their Magzy’s fix,” said Palmer, adding that despite its simple recipe, market-goers can’t seem to stay away.

“It’s just sugar, salt, canola oil and popcorn kernels. It’s a simple, basic process but our recipe has proven to be quite popular. We went through 90 pounds of kernels in the last week before Christmas.”

This summer will mark Palmer’s fifth jointly manning Smashed Lemonade. Half-jokingly, she said it’s the “love we put into it” that makes her lemonade so popular.

“Everybody comes and says they try to make it at home and can never quite get it, [even though] we tell people exactly how we make it and they watch it every week,” said Palmer, adding that this could be due to the fact that “whenever somebody else makes something for you, it just tastes better.”

Mohamed Fagir and Iqbal Fagir of the Fredericton Boyce Farmers Market’s ever-popular Yummy Samosa and Samosa Delite know this better than anyone. They believe it’s the uniqueness – and freshness – of their product that makes it such a hit with market customers.

“When my wife [Iqbal] started making samosas, she was just doing it for our kids to take for lunch at school. She never used any kind of preservatives to keep them longer so that they are healthier for the kids. We do the same thing for our farmers’ market customers,” said Mohamed Fagir, a native of Sudan.

“We never add any kind of chemicals to our food and we’re using [fresh ingredients].”

The Fredericton Boyce Farmers Market, with its many delectable food staples, is open every Saturday from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 665 George St.

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