In common with most places in the “developed” world, Ronda’s market stopped functioning years ago once the supermarkets came to town selling convenience along with everything else. But sadly not quality. You cannot buy food produced locally in these nationwide chains, but you can park your car easily. You cannot make shopping a social experience, but you can speed up the purchasing process so you can get back to earning more money! You can’t find out where your produce comes from, but who gives a damn.
Having passionately embraced the localvore philosophy for both personal and global gratification, I have nothing but praise for the Ronda initiative to reopen its mercado de abastos. Applications are being accepted for the unoccupied 2o stalls with incentives including two years’ free rent. I hope they will follow other towns that have successfully reopened their markets by improving the parking around the market streets, accepting modern attractions such as cooking demonstrations alongside the traditional fish, meat and veg stalls.
It is intriguing to ponder why the two stalls that have weathered the impact of supermarkets are the spice shop and the ecological veggie stall. And the market bar of course which is always full of life.
It is up to the public now to go a little bit out of their way to support this admirable initiative. When you next visit Ronda, check it out! Stop for a coffee, mingle with the locals, enjoy the Andalucian joie-de-vivre.