Letter to The Editor: Malibu Farmers Market—Unwavering Standards

Letter to the Editor: The Malibu Times

Dear Editor,

The Malibu Farmers Market, managed by the Cornucopia Foundation, is renowned not only for its longevity but for its unwavering commitment to maintaining strict standards. This commitment extends to ensuring fairness in pricing—a key aspect that sets us apart. We strictly enforce that vendors do not raise their prices just because they are operating in Malibu. This policy is integral to our ethos, ensuring that our market remains accessible and fair for all our customers, regardless of its affluent location.

Our operational standards are equally stringent. We require all vendors to arrive by 6:30 a.m., providing them with ample time to set up. This early setup is crucial in maintaining the market’s smooth operation and professional atmosphere. Our attention to detail goes beyond just the products sold. We meticulously check that tablecloths, tents, and food containers are clean and that the mandatory weights are securely attached to the tents. We emphasize to our vendors that the aesthetics of their stalls are just as important as the quality of their products, reinforcing the market’s reputation for excellence.

We make it clear to all vendors that these high standards are non-negotiable. If a vendor is uncomfortable with these expectations, we suggest that the Malibu Farmers Market might not be the right fit for them. Our market is not just a commercial space but a representation of a collective ethos, and it’s crucial that every vendor aligns with this.

However, we have encountered instances where vendors agree to our terms, pay their rent, and then seek to challenge our established protocols. Some express frustration and direct their anger towards me, Debra Bianco, with accusations of rudeness or inflexibility. Rather than choosing to leave, they attempt to alter the market’s well-established practices or advocate for a change in management. Such incidents underscore the importance of our rigorous selection process and firm adherence to our principles.

Despite these challenges, the Malibu Farmers Market continues to thrive as a unique and cherished part of our community. Our insistence on maintaining high standards and fair pricing sets us apart, creating a market experience that is not only enjoyable but also embodies the spirit and character of Malibu.

We invite everyone to experience this for themselves – to see how our dedication to these values creates a market that is not just in Malibu but truly of Malibu.

Debra Bianco
Manager, Malibu Farmers Market