Translated by Jasmine Nishino
Speak the Language of Food! The Farmers' Market in Kobe Sannomiya
Written by Osawa Kumi
In the Sannomiya area of Kobe you can visit a Farmers' Market held almost each Saturday. This market is the ideal place to find locally grown fresh vegetables, as well as other natural products. It is also a great place to interact with local place and ta
In the center of Sannomiya, an area in Kobe, Hyogo prefecture, there is a park called Higashi Yūenchi. It is conveniently located to the south on of Kobe city hall.
Within Higashi Yūenchi Park, a "Farmer's Market" is held almost every Saturday.
Local farmers bring their products and sell them at the market. This event is held by EAT LOCAL KOBE, an organization that connects buyers and sellers through the local products of Kobe.
Kobe has the image of being a busy city, but its northern and western areas are actually major farming areas. It is a profitable business, as farming near the city allows farmers to sell their products directly.
In Japanese there is the term chisan chisho (地産地消) , which means that the local products are made and consumed locally. This ensures that the costs of transportation are kept low. In addition, the consumers can enjoy delicious fresh products.
The concept of the market is summarized on a black board set within the market.
1. Let's eat locally harvested products.
2. Let's eat seasonal products.
3. Let's grow vegetables.
4. Make cooking simple.
5. Let's cook together.
6. Let's eat together.
7. Let's buy ingredients at the farmer's market.
Let's check out how this event is like.
Enjoy Talking with the Farmers!
Around seven to nine farmers participate in this event every time. Being able to interact and talk to the farmers about farming and tasty recipes is part of the fun of visiting this market. Aside from vegetables, there are farmers who also carry home made miso (bean paste) and pickles.
This is a cabbage freshly picked in the morning! The farmers attending change every week, so you may be able to find something new each time you go.
Being able to see and meet the people who actually make the food contributes to the feeling of trust and safety in our every day lives.
This is a booth run by a couple who practices "organic farming". You can enjoy the homey and gentle atmosphere they create.
Some of the farmers sell mint and other herbs.
A frequent shopper mentioned how they commute by train every week to come to this market, as everything tastes so good and they are able to learn new recipes each time.
Dairy Products, Eggs, Tofu and More!
Aside from farm products, there are approximately seven to ten booths that carry tasty specialties made with ingredients from Kobe. The representatives of a family owned ranch near Mt. Rokko bring fresh milk and cheese.
From the largest island of Japan, Awaji Island, you can get freshly laid chicken eggs.
This is a tofu stand.
At the florist, one can find flowers grown in the northern area of Kobe adding their bright colors to the event space.
You can find a wide variety of bread, desserts, spices, and many other products right here. For more details, check out the Facebook page of EAT LOCAL KOBE every week to see what's going to be around.
A Café Under the Trees
After shopping around, take a break under the trees. The shops offer small snacks and drinks.
How about trying a delicious breakfast made with vegetables harvested from Kobe?
Kobe Port is famous as a location with many unique coffee shops. One of the best coffee shops in Motomachi has opened a stand here at the farmers' market.
Enjoy the Neighborhood
This market is not only a trade area, but is also an important place for people to interact. There are picture books and books related to food available for anyone to read, as well as playgrounds for children.
One of the organizers was kind enough to give a message to our readers: "Please come and join the market! Everybody who appreciates fresh products is welcome!"
Not all the shops can offer services in English, but food has the power to transcend any language barriers. One of the shop owners stated: "We welcome customers from abroad with enthusiasm and that gets through even without words." This impressed me a lot! If you have the chance, how about enjoying the farmers' market through the great food on sale here?
Please note that there are no trash cans in the park. Return the tableware to the shops after you finish your meal.
Below you can see the schedule of the event in 2016.
EAT LOCAL KOBE FARMERS MARKET
Address: Hyogo, Kobe, Chūō ward, Kanō-chō 6 Higashi Yuuenchi
Hours: 9:00 - 12:30 (Breakfast starts at 9:30)
Open: June 4, 11, 18. July 16, 23, 30. Please check their website for future dates.
Credit Cards: -
Other Languages: Varies depending on the shop.
Menus in Other Languages: depends on the shop.
Nearest Station: JR Sannomiya Station (JR三ノ宮駅) / Hankyū Sannomiya Station (阪急三宮駅) / Hanshin Sannomiya Station (阪神三宮駅) / Kobe city subway Sannomiya Station (神戸市営地下鉄三宮駅) along with Sannomiya Hanadokei mae Station (三宮・花時計前駅) / Port Liner Sannomiya Station (ポートライナー三宮駅)
Access: 5 to 8 minute walk from each station
Price range: -
Phone number: +81-078-322-5355 (Directs to the Kobe City Agricultural and Marine Product Industry Bureau)
Homepage:EAT LOCAL KOBE (Japanese)