Vendors/Public Market Talking Apples and Oranges

June 3, 2014
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Based on several community and other public meetings, most people have the understanding the 184 year-old Haymarket Pushcart vendors and the nonprofit Boston Market Place have already worked out a formal memorandum of understanding outlining what each will see, where they’ll purchase the products and set up areas.

Reportedly, the Boston Public Market will offer products that are not currently sold at the Haymarket site.

Apparently, the agreement will not be official unless the Boston Public Market puts in writing that they will not infringe on their territory by purchasing produce from the wholesale New England Produce Center where the pushcart vendors get their shipped produce, buying what’s left over at the end of the week at a large discount and selling it very cheaply on Fridays and Saturdays.

Slated to open in June, the indoor 28,000-square-foot Boston Market Place will sell only New England sourced products 5 days a week, according to BMP sources.

The vendors also want financial penalties for any violation of the purchasing agreement.

Reportedly, the public market, including a state grant for $4 million, has raised $92.4 million. The project needs $15.5 million to break ground. on the project.

The new Market Place will house about 45 permanent vendors indoors and up to 20 additional vendors on the outdoor plaza.

Standards for both areas will be held to the same local sourcing standards according to the proposal.

Reportedly, the Haymarket vendors don’t want to have the Commonwealth subsidizing a project whereby a farmers market today becomes a competitive market for street vendors tomorrow, according to one vendor.