Shopping at the Early Morning Market

As a lot of you know, the Early Morning Market has been engaged in a struggle for survival due to the council’s desire to replace the market with a shopping mall. At the moment the matter is in court and it is business as usual for the traders. The produce sold there is all incredibly fresh and is mostly grown within a 30km radius of Durban. The veg you buy there has usually been picked the day before or early of the same morning. None of it has been refrigerated or smothered in cellophane. It is also incredibly cheap.

Despite this, few middle class people shop there. There is a misconception that it is difficult to access the market by car. There is a parking lot adjoining the market. It can be accessed from Market Road which is the road behind the market. Even if the parking bays are full, you can park and pop in to shop as most of the cars belong to traders who are there all day. Everyone knows everyone else, and if anyone needs you to move, someone will call you on the intercom (this has never happened to me and I have left my car parking in other cars for hours on end). The market is open from early in the morning until around 2:30 – 3:00pm on Monday to Saturday.

Unlike shopping at a supermarket, where everything is prepackaged in layers of fish-killing and bird-choking substances, at the market you can touch the veg you are going to buy. You can choose your tomatoes. And instead of dodging your way through a fluorescent hell, you get to actually meet real life people, who can tell you exactly where every item you are buying has been. I juiced some carrots from the market the other day and was reminded what real carrots taste like.

I have started gathering some delicious sounding recipes from some of the women at the market and as soon as I get a chance I will work on some contributions from them for the blog. In the meantime, visit them yourselves.

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