Our roots

Our roots run deep

Many Toronto Wholesale Produce Association members can trace their family histories back to the early days of Muddy York—specifically the bustling commercial area known as St. Lawrence Market. Our wholesalers’ fresh produce is as popular today as it was back then. And though based at the Ontario Food Terminal for decades now, our members continue to contribute to the economic, social and cultural fabric of the many communities they serve. Here are some highlights from our market’s history.
x

 

 

1803

The making of a landmark

In the original town of York (now Toronto), the parcel of land stretching from...
Read more
1881

James Bamford And Sons Produce

Bamford Produce is a fourth-generation family business established in 1881. James...
Read more
1888

City and Market expansion

Toronto is a fast-growing centre in the late 19th century, with its population...
Read more
1904

A fresh start

In 1904 a new canopied building connects the north and south lots. The farmers’...
Read more
1907

Produce wholesalers unite

Cramped conditions and antiquated facilities begin to take their toll on the wholesale...
Read more
1908

Chiovitti Banana Co.

Founded in 1908 by Italian immigrant Antonio Chiovitti, Chiovitti Banana started...
Read more
1914

Ontario Produce Company

The Ontario Produce Company dates back to 1914, when Max and Maurice Wolfe opened...
Read more
1918

F.G. Lister & Co

Founded in 1918 by Mr. Frederick George Lister, F.G. Lister & Co. is dedicated...
Read more
1920

Meschino Banana Co.

When we think of bananas, we also think of another well-known name at the Terminal—Meschino....
Read more
1929

Stretched to capacity

By 1929, the Toronto wholesale fruit and produce market is truly struggling to...
Read more
1930s

Ippolito Fruit & Produce

In the 1930s, Carmelo and Filomena Ippolito launched their wholesale fresh fruit...
Read more
1930s

Burnac Produce

Established by the Burnett family, Burnac Produce has roots in the industry dating...
Read more
1933

The TWPA is born

With the Great Depression, wholesalers begin to face financial challenges. In...
Read more
1943

Veg-Pak Produce

For more than 70 years, Veg-Pak Produce Ltd. has been a leader in innovation....
Read more
1952

Fire strikes the old market

Located in the St. Lawrence Market area, the wholesale produce market is reduced...
Read more
1954

Ontario Food Terminal opens

The Ontario Food Terminal finally opens, becoming
Read more
1957

Wholesalers Convention


Read more
1960

North American Produce Buyers

Founded by Morris Shoom, North American Produce Buyers has operated out of the...
Read more
1970

Johnvince Foods

In the late 50s Vince Pulla got his start in the bulk food business working at...
Read more
1982

Our Farmers’ Market

Premier Bill Davis formally opens a dedicated Farmers’ Market on the west...
Read more
Fast forward to today
As the largest wholesale produce market in Canada, many across Ontario, Québec...
Read more