Thursday, 30 April 2015

Key Findings On QVM Renewal Consultation


The following is taken straight from the Phase 3 CommunityConsultation Report released on Tuesday and now available on line - see links in previous article.

"The engagement process elicited a range of feedback on the Draft Master Plan, a summary of the key findings is the purpose of this report. Below is an overview of the key findings.
• Opening Hours: the majority of both the traders and the public participants are supportive of the concept to enhance the market as a destination that provides a changeable range of offers.
• Use of open space: both the traders and the public showed a preference for programmed markets and events in the new open space proposed for Q3 – Quarter Three. ***
• Access: while traders said that improved car parking would improve access to the market, public participants said that improved pedestrian amenity and safety would make it easier for them to access the market.
• Heritage: both the traders and the public participants said that they preferred artwork, signage or landscape features as ways to celebrate the market’s history.
• Market Cross: the most common suggestion by traders and public participants for Market Cross was public seating."


*** Just to clarify this refers to the open space currently occupied by the car park – Ed.



Latest Consultation Report on QVM Renewal Now Available


The Phase 3 Community Consultation Report involving feedback and submissions from traders and the public on The QVM Draft Master Plan has been released and is available online.

To go straight to the Consultation Report and download the PDF file go here - http://participate.melbourne.vic.gov.au/files/3514/3020/3155/QVM_Phase_3_Community_Engagement_Report.pdf

To go to the website that has links to all the documentation associated with the renewal including the Consultation Report, the Draft Master Plan, and the Strategic Brief, go here - http://participate.melbourne.vic.gov.au/projects/queenvictoriamarket



Friday, 24 April 2015

From The Editors Desk

These are random items from the editor’s desk.

Drink Prices - According to the Australian Business Review, Sydney is listed as the most expensive place in the world to buy a 2 litre bottle of Coca-Cola - $4.40. That makes the $3.00 I pay for a 600ml bottle of water look really stupid. Then again the price of Australian beer is listed as good value by world standards, so am I just drinking the wrong product? Perhaps it is time more of QVM’s cafes got liquor licences.

ANZAC Marketing - with Woolworths removing their "Fresh In Our Memories" campaign and Target withdrawing three Gallipoli counter lines (despite being sanctioned by official ANZAC body) the pressure on "tacky" ANZAC related items is ramping up. Victoria Bitter are holding fast on their legitimate connection with the concept.

Trader’s Comment  19/04/2015 15:03:35 QVM Car Park  "What is going on with the car park lately with all the trucks parked in there ? In the past couple of weekends alone I have counted at least 14 trucks at a time taking not only 1 car space but most of them 2 parks and in  a couple of cases 4!!!! At a time when we need every customer we can get !.These parking spaces should be for customers that want to shop at our market not as a dam Truck Depot !!!!"
Andrew Cyples – Andrew has been in Sydney this week pitching the market’s new tour program with travel agents, wholesalers and tour operators.

Unfair Contract Provisions For Small Business – The Federal Government is proceeding with provisions that will enable courts to declare a term within a contract void if it is unfair. “For example, a term that allows a big business to unilaterally change the price or key terms during the course of the contract could be considered unfair,” Small Business Minister, Bruce Billson said in a statement.

Harper Review Slams Restrictive Shopping Hours – The review of Australia’s competition laws led by Ian Harper has criticised the restrictive trading policies determined by government regulations in some states that prevent retailers from opening when they want to.



QVM On New Melbourne Monopoly Board Game

A couple of months ago, the Lord Mayor announced that Melbourne would get its own Monopoly board featuring a whole host of Melbourne attractions and famous streets. The entire board will have a Melbourne spin including the Community Chest, Chance and playing tokens.

As Queen Victoria Market is one of the premiere tourism and iconic Melbourne destinations, we were approached to have a tile on the board and our own Community Chest Card. The question is what to put on the Community Chest Card?

If you have a creative idea we would love to hear from you. One suggestion might be – “You sold all your products at the Market and earned $100. “ Submissions need to be 25 words or less and you will need to act quickly as submissions are supposed to close today (24th April). To meet the deadline we suggest you send your idea direct to Matt Bell (matt.bell@qvm.com.au) . And don’t forget to send a copy to us for publishing on this website – generalmerchandisetraders@iinet.net.au



Update On Stall Pack-up Times

We reported previously that some traders were receiving infringement notices for extending their stall pack-up times beyond the required limits. QVMAC Trader Representatives have asked management for a moratorium while the issue and all its ramifications are discussed.

Infringement notices will cease until a letter is sent to all traders explaining the QVM rules and how they will be applied. We understand there is particular concern about some pack-ups continuing into late evening. Traders who engage pack-up staff will need to ensure that they are abiding by market rules.

There will no doubt be more discussion on this issue.


COMMENTS:
24/04/2015 20:04:07 Late pack up!!!!! "The management is so out of touch with the reality and a lack of research and consultation with the traders before they bring in this rule. We are their customers which paying our rental fee for them to manage this market. But in turn took our money and do not concern any of our needs.
Just imagine that after received money from our customer and we tell them they have one minute to leave our shop. But we have to give our service to earn our money.
They brought in this rule which cause a lot of stress to quite a few traders and also the packing up ""Boys n Girls"".
They are a part of this market, I'm sure quite a few traders could not manage without them. The management should come and see how they work their magic during setting and packing up time. They are sweating for their money. They do not standing and walking around then getting pay. 
Queen Vic market is not a happy place for me to come and work. But it was one of the reason that I had my name up as a traders rep. Hopefully I can voice our concerns and stand up against all non common sense in our work place, and also stand up for a minority group in this market with a hope that this market will be a better place to work. 
Not very happy customer of QVM. Regards"  Kha Nguyen
Thanks for your input Kha - Ed. 

06/05/2015 13:05:40 Why Enforcing Pack-up Times Is Wrong Right Now "The biggest issue l see with enforcing this is this: Customers are regularly arriving at a later time of the day, this in turn means that we the traders are trying to make our living at a later period of the day, closer to and after closing times on a regular basis. I for one am consistently making sales after the closing times of the market. We are not a shop, were we have the option to just shut the door, and turn away potential customers (I'm not saying just shut the door in their faces either), we are an open space, were customers can just walk into our stalls and look at our products. l am sure that ALL of our traders would allow our customers to browse, and hopefully buy and thus in turn have a good customer experience. At the end of the day, it about providing customer service, and the traders being able to make a living."  

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

What QVM Can Learn From A Sporting Icon

The QVM and MCG are two of Melbourne's icons.  The MCG has undergone substantial renewal in recent years, and while quite different in its purpose and relevance to its customers, the process that was undertaken could provide a very useful template for QVM's renewal.

The MCG is steeped in tradition much like our market with the world's first cricket test taking place in 1877, just a year before the QVM was officially opened. When the MCC proposed the dismantlement of the members stand as part of a major renewal in the early 2000's there was an outcry. How could they contemplate dismantling this iconic structure and all the tradition that went with it? A short time later, we marvel at the facilities on offer and the retention of many original features. It could be said that tradition simply has a new look.

Fans who visited the ground during those renewal years were greeted with large areas
under construction but that didn't stop the main game from continuing. Construction and normal stadium operation were carefully scheduled to ensure that both continued, a bit like the assurances we have been given for the QVM renewal. It is true that QVM probably has to function more often through the week than a sports stadium but presumably the same methods could be used to minimise disruption.

The MCG has continued to thrive and prosper as a sports stadium despite a radical transformation. It has retained its core focus of providing entertainment for fans and in the eyes of many it is doing a better job than ever. It has upgraded, introduced new technology, and changed the face of sport. The efficiency of its operation, the staggering way that it converts from one sporting code to another and its ability to remain at the forefront of sporting entertainment is a tribute to meticulous planning, and a well held vision for constant improvement and assessment.

We have written on many occasions about the neglect of QVM over the last 20 years or so. If the rigorous standards adopted at the MCG had been applied to our own market, we probably wouldn't be in quite the same predicament we are now. Fortunately, QVM renewal now has the intent and the financing to correct the situation. Can we learn from our iconic city neighbour?

It is time for another Melbourne icon to get the transformation treatment. Studying the MCG experience may make it a little easier for traders to overcome the fear and uncertainty of transforming our market into a truly relevant shopping experience going forward. It is probably no coincidence that the immediate past president of the MCC is also on the Board of QVM.

The MCG is not a shopping destination but the relevance of its successful transformation should not be lost on all those who love QVM and particularly those who earn a living from it. The MCG renewal shows us that transforming our market in a significant way, and meeting the modern needs of our customers, whilst enhancing traditional relevance, is achievable.



Monday, 20 April 2015

More Space For Storage Boxes.

Why have we taken a photo of a market work vehicle parked outside the old engagement hub on Queen St? Well, it is the light fittings on the back of the vehicle that will bring joy to traders who store boxes in M shed. The lights were previously taking up space in M Shed and are now being moved to another location. Once all the lights are removed, it should create space for an extra 10 or so storage boxes and take some of the strain off traders who need storage away from their stalls.

Thank you to management for acting promptly to our latest request to have them moved. And thanks to Tony for the photo.

PS - 23/4/2015 - Management have confirmed that all light fittings were removed from M shed on Monday. - Ed.

Have Your Say - click here.


Sunday, 19 April 2015

Latest Retail News – 19/4/2015


1. Former Lion Nathan CFO joins board of Dick Smith.
2. Expenditure on household goods up 8.7% in 3 months to February.
3. Australian automotive industry says March best month ever for car sales.
4. ACCC looks for tougher penalties on law breakers.
5. Woolworths drops controversial “Fresh in our memories” Anzac website.
6. Aldi plans new stores to take advantage of new Victorian zoning rules.
7. US retail sales rise for first time in 4 months.
8. National Farmers Federation to expand “True Aussie” food branding.
9. Rising petrol prices and impending budget blamed for 3.2% drop in consumer confidence.
10. OPSM opens luxury optical shop in Collins St. with some frames more than $1000.
11. Just Jeans, Best & Less, and Lowes accused of not treating overseas workers adequately.
12. Target forced to withdraw 3 Anzac branded products.
13. Neiman Marcus launches “Snap, Find, Shop” app that links photographs of any product with in-store options.

Why Enforcing Pack-up Times Is Wrong Right Now

QVM staff are reportedly issuing infringement notices for traders who fail to pack up their stalls and clear the market by the allotted time. We believe that more consultation needs to take place on the issue.

The Rule book says that traders have one hour after closing time to complete their pack-up. That is generally recognised as inadequate for most traders and two hours has been adopted as a more realistic benchmark over recent years. Even two hours may be inadequate for some traders, particularly those with complex merchandising displays.

Recent issues like parking vehicles or storage boxes in empty stalls have been the subject of rigorous discussion between QVMAC Trader Representatives and management leading to a clear understanding of the obligations of all parties before enforcement commences. The subject of stall pack-up deserves the same examination. There are many issues here including how traders treat their valuable customers who happen to encroach into packing time.

Traders will no doubt argue that the presentation of stock and the service we give our customers should always take priority over the operational needs of QVM. That is probably true, but every conflict of purpose needs to be discussed and examined so that both sides are happy with the result. That is what needs to happen with pack-up times. QVMAC Trader Representatives will be organising discussions with management.

Possible Conflict of Interest - The writer of this article regularly takes 2 hours and sometimes 2.5 hours to pack up a complex merchandising display at his stall.


COMMENTS:
06/05/2015 13:05:40 Why Enforcing Pack-up Times Is Wrong Right Now "The biggest issue l see with enforcing this is this:
Customers are regularly arriving at a later time of the day, this in turn means that we the traders are trying to make our living at a later period of the day, closer to and after closing times on a regular basis. I for one am consistently making sales after the closing times of the market.
We are not a shop, were we have the option to just shut the door, and turn away potential customers (I'm not saying just shut the door in their faces either), we are an open space, were customers can just walk into our stalls and look at our products. l am sure that ALL of our traders would allow our customers to browse, and hopefully buy and thus in turn have a good customer experience. At the end of the day, it about providing customer service, and the traders being able to make a living."

A Trader's Experience – Life Can Be Cruel.

You will gather from our photo that this article is on the light side, and we don't guarantee the accuracy of the detail, but at least a couple of traders swear this story is correct.

A trader's stall packer was working away diligently at a stall on Sunday after trading had ceased when somebody stole their bike and belongings. The victim considered calling security but quickly realised they were unlikely to arrive in time so, he and another stall packer, set off after the thief.

The perpetrator had an advantage, being on a bike, and led our two pursuers on a merry chase through nearby streets. They eventually caught the thief and regained the bike plus a bag that reportedly contained a number of stolen mobile phones.

Tired, but elated they returned to the stall to find that security staff had arrived. But the security staff were not there for the theft. They were in the process of booking the stall holder for a late pack-up. Sometimes life can very cruel.

Thanks to Tony for this story.


Friday, 17 April 2015

Traders Will Decide Next Cash Giveaway

The Traders Cash Giveaway before Christmas got off to a bit of a rocky start, but turned out to be a successful promotion and is scheduled to be repeated during July school holidays. However traders will need to support the concept with a $20 contribution.

The idea for the promotion originally came from a trader. The cash component means that it is quite expensive to run and traders were asked to contribute $20 each for the period of the promotion. The promotion created a real buzz around the market and its combination of cash prizes and entertainment from Harry the roving musician proved very successful.  

Afterwards we found that many traders had  not agreed to contribute the $20. There were a variety of reasons given and no doubt some concern over whether it would work, or not, was a significant factor. Fortunately management decided to pick up the tab and the promotion was run to its final conclusion. Traders suggested some changes to the format including 2 draws per day, prizes consisting only of market vouchers (no cash), and a modified form of entry-ticket distribution allowing traders to give tickets direct to their customers.

Fast forward to today, and we now know the promotion was a success and the changes suggested by traders have been incorporated into the new format. But the economics haven’t changed, and the contribution by all traders is an essential element of getting the promotion off the ground. Put simply – if traders do not agree to make a contribution, the event will not happen. This time around it is $20 for 12 or so trading days of the promotion which does sound like pretty good value. We understand that some leaflets, including acceptance forms, have been distributed and more will be distributed over the weekend. 



COMMENTS:
20/04/2015 09:45:49 Trader Giveaway "Great article thanks Greg. Promotions like the Traders Giveaway take time to fine tune and to build into something meaningful. We are very supportive of the idea and want to build on it long into the future. If we can garner the (financial) support of more traders then we can gain some real momentum, increase our spend on promoting the concept and keep building on it into the future. " Mark Smith

A Good Accountant Is Money Well Spent

I was surprised to read this week that less than 10% of small businesses call their accountant a "trusted advisor" and it raises the question if that statistic applies to QVM traders as well. Apparently Accountants, Lawyers, and Bank Managers have all slipped in status and small businesses owners are becoming more reliant on suppliers, customers and internet searches for their advice.

In the case of accountants, the shift is probably consistent with the standardisation of many accounting processes including computer programs like MYOB but there are many services an Accountant can provide that go well beyond computer programs. A good Accountant will be a lot more than just a book keeper or a tax minimiser. A wholistic approach to business management and finances in general can be very beneficial to a business owner.

Some years ago I moved from my long term Accountant to a local accounting firm, partly because they were closer, and partly because their fees were significantly cheaper. There wasn't much all round business advice but my books were up to date and everything was going ok until the tax department asked to do an audit on my business. They were questioning how I was surviving on such a low income - this was 2008/09 and the GFC was really impacting. I contacted my local accounting firm for advice on how to handle the approach from the ATO only to be told that "that is something between you and the taxation department". That wasn't quite the response I was looking for. My new accountant was good at keeping books but not so good on business advice.

I then rang my old Accountant and explained my predicament. He asked to see my accounts for the time since I had left him and immediately contacted the ATO by phone. He then followed up with a detailed letter on my financial situation including the impact of the GFC on retailing. The audit never took place. Needless to say I took my business back to my old Accountant with humble apologies for ever leaving him in the first place. I am now paying higher fees, but not complaining. And I receive good advice, not just on how to operate my business in tough times, but how to prepare for the future.

I will never forget one of my first meetings with this Accountant some 30 years ago. We had just completed the year's accounts and I said "How do the figures look?" He replied "How do you want them to look?"  That cheeky response belied a very professional approach to accounting but left me in no doubt that my interests were in good hands. If you don't have a good accountant I recommend you get one. Someone who wants to look after your affairs may cost a little more, but it is money well spent.

- Greg Smith 17/4/2015


Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Three Retail Disturbances That Traders May Want To Consider.

This is a story about 3 different innovations (I am calling them disturbances) in retailing that make it glaringly obvious we have to rethink the way we engage customers.

Firstly, you can now hire a goat herder through Amazon. That's right, if you need a goat herder, a plumber, or almost any other service you just contact your online retailer (Amazon) and it will be organised along with the products you need to do the job. Pre-shopping (browsing) and actual shopping, are increasingly being done online, and shoppers do not have to physically "go shopping" to get what they want.

Secondly, from last month you can go to a sporting event at Amsterdam Arena (it's in
Amsterdam) and order your drinks and eats from your seat, on your smartphone, and have them delivered directly to you by a runner. The point? - convenience is increasingly becoming a major ingredient in customer choices. Customers are looking for ways to get want they want, as easy as possible, so they can concentrate on the main game (excuse the pun).

Thirdly, Pebble Watches, one of the original Kickstarter crowd funding concepts, recently decided to raise an extra $500,000 to finance a new concept smartwatch. They wanted just $500,000, but small investors (crowd funding is all about individuals putting in their money upfront) contributed a staggering $20m. So, for the right product, consumers are prepared to spend up. And, as much as we value our traditional relationship with consumers, in this case, they were prepared to make a commitment, and pay-up, before the goods were even manufactured.

These three seemingly unrelated examples tell us that we have a lot to think about.
ONLINE - not everyone has to embrace online, but if you are selling in a category with a strong online following you need to factor it into your strategy. 
CONVENIENCE - consumers are shouting out loud that they want convenience. This is why we need to think about our availability to our customers, how we can make their shopping easier, and why the trading hours debate is so important.
THE PERSONAL TOUCH - yes, this is an advantage market traders have over impersonal department stores but as the Kickstarter crowd funding model shows us, there are many consumers who don't require the personal touch to open their wallets. For them, it all comes down to the offer.

QVM is a great market with a great future. We have strong community support, the backing of a committed city council, and the financing to make suitable changes. QVM believes that creating an events place is the way forward. Crowds of people coming to our market for lots of different reasons, across a wider spread of hours, is a very attractive picture for most people. The Draft Master Plan for QVM identifies an interesting framework for the future. For traders it raises many questions, and the sooner we get down to the detail and start considering the necessary changes through co-operative consultation, the better off we will all be.

Published by the Editor - 14/04/15


Have Your Say - click here.

COMMENTS:
15/04/2015 08:31:49 ed post "Very interesting article Greg, agree with all the points raised.. with regards to these...
QVM believes that creating an events place is the way forward. Crowds of people coming to our market for lots of different reasons, across a wider spread of hours. 
Unless the city council does the right thing, and stops charging exorbitant fees to park a car per hour at all hours. there is no hope.
I was across the road from the market the other week, along the park . For people to use the park, kick a ball , take their kids, take a stroll, have to pay $5.50 an hour, and this is till 8.30 at night...I call this shameful...no excuse, same as Saturday and Sunday, streets are empty around the market, yet  high fees  apply. simple greed.
Unless they change all these, we are all ""pissing in the wind"" Andy

15/04/2015 08:42:45 let me add "Last couple of years the local council has send...traffic wardens to ... see story. http://www.heraldsun.com.au/leader/east/worshippers-at-templestowe8217s-st-haralambos-greek-orthodox-church-cop-parking-fines-at-easter-midnight-mass/story-fngnvlxu-12266 I tell you this ,normally you would have to stand outside, for the amount of people....after thislast two years we could walk right in the front of the church. Hundreds of less people attending...same thing happening with the area around the market, merciless fines and fees. Andy

Thanks for your input Andy - Ed

Sunday, 12 April 2015

New QVM Food Festival Goes European


The next round of Sunday Queen St. Festivals will celebrate European food and culture.


EuroUnion will feature comforting winter fare reflecting the changing season and will run over 11 Sundays commencing 3rd May. Applications from interested food vendors are available here - http://www.qvm.com.au/eurounion-event-application/


Latest Retail News – 12/04/15

Latest Retail News – 12/04/15
1. February retail spending up 4.3% over 2014.
2. Solomon Lew and private equity groups rumoured to be considering Myer takeover.
3. Consumer confidence lowest in 8 months.
4. Miss Chu street food chain finds buyer.
5. Government proposes GST on downloaded movies and books.
6. Jeweller, Michael Hill, says Australia operations dragging on profit.
7. Michel’s Patisserie named Australian coffee shop of the year for 2014.
8. Coles hit with $2.5m fine for “baked today” claims.
9. Hotel group reviews its customers ...with their approval.
10. Easter penalty rates close some retail stores.


Conference Seeks Support For Public Markets

The 9th International Public Markets Conference in Barcelona last month was attended by representatives from hundreds of world markets including our own QVM. Individuals can record their support for public markets through a link shown below.


The conference was a great opportunity for exchanging information about world markets and was designed to highlight the importance of public markets and their role in city community life. The following link gives full details of a declaration made at the end of the conference which can be signed by interested organisations and individuals - http://www.pps.org/blog/sign-the-declaration-promote-healthy-public-markets-for-all/


Lost Space For Storage Boxes

QVM's clamp down on storage boxes being left in public areas is a welcome move as we aim to make our market look more professional. However, there never seems to be enough space to accommodate empty boxes during trading hours and QVM's practice of storing spare fittings in areas designated for storage boxes doesn't help the situation. We wonder if these lamps in M shed couldn't be stored elsewhere or at least more efficiently and free up space for daily box storage needs.

PS - We understand our story is in fact a few days old and that at least some of the lamps have now been suspended from the trusses in M shed to leave more room for boxes. But there is still a lot of space being wasted  and traders are paying the price. - Ed
For an update on this story go here - http://www.victraders.com/2015/04/more-space-for-storage-boxes.html 

Have Your Say - click here.

Market Bans Tourists

Barcelona’s famous La Boqueria market is preventing visitor groups of more than 15 people from visiting the market during busy times. It is claimed that they disrupt the normal shopping habits of local genuine customers.

The locals complain about the dawdling and photo taking of tourists and in a crowded market that can become a problem. Barcelona is reportedly the 10th most visited city in the world. La Boqueria is essentially a food market and we have heard some of our own food traders declare that tourist business is not their target. They would rather concentrate on local families doing their weekly shopping than tourists looking to buy a few snacks to take back to a hotel room.


Of course the top end, or Specialty Merchandise area, of QVM relies very heavily on tourists. While La Boqueria is trying to restrict tourist groups the top end of QVM sees tourists as its main target. Too many tourists is certainly a problem that Specialty Merchandise Traders would love to contend with.


Traders Workshop – General Merchandise (First Group)


Here is a summary from the trader's workshop on 5th March involving Specialty Merchandise Traders. 
SUMMARY – Thursday 5th March 2015 Trader Discussion Group #2: General Merchandise
Provided below is a summary of the key messages and themes discussed at the trader discussion group held on the 5 March 2015.
Note: these comments may have been paraphrased to reflect a range of similar comments associated with a single theme or issue.

Strengths of the draft master plan
Vision and a commitment to improve Queen Victoria Market.
Realignment of Franklin Street provides better access to QVM.
Removing parking and public vehicle access on Queen Street (between Victoria and Therry Streets).
Introduction of a laneway or arcade between Franklin and Therry Street.
Provide weather protection for Deli Lane and E and F Sheds
Fixed trading stalls in open sheds.
Not becoming a shopping centre.

Weaknesses of the draft master plan
Level of detail available for traders and the direct impacts associated with the renewal.
Valuing the history of traders including recognition of their stories.
Uncertainty associated with the provision of car parking including the number and location(s).
Trader car parking.
The location of back of house facilities.
Difficult to reconcile impact of change now for future generations.

Priorities for final master plan.
Valuing traders’ history, stories, culture and community.
Preserving retail diversity.
Weather protection.
Roofing of E and F sheds.
Re-doing the Munro site.
Ongoing maintenance of the market.
Traders not to suffer during the renewal - process and impacts to be managed.
Sufficient car parking for visitors and traders.
Back of house for the markets three trading areas.
Trial fixed trading.
Generating trader support before and during the renewal.
Communication with stakeholders and the community

Other key considerations
(Current) empty stalls.
Competition from increased traders in the future.
The future retail mix needs to be viable to reduce duplication
Lower market is currently trading well.
Concern there will be a drop in business during renovations.
Coordination between local and state government about access and movement

Political commitment is a risk to the project. 


Traders Workshop – Fruit & Vegetable


Here is a summary from the trader's workshop on 18th March involving Fruit & Vegetable  Traders.

SUMMARY – Wednesday 18th March 2015 Trader Discussion Group #7: Fruit & Vegetable
Provided below is a summary of the key messages and themes discussed at the trader discussion group held on the 18 March 2015
Note: these comments may have been paraphrased to reflect a range of similar comments associated with a single theme or issue.

Strengths of the draft master plan
Public seating in Market Cross
Improved amenities, toilets, parents room
Managing waste, including fish waste
Eco-initiatives – solar panels on roof etc

Weaknesses of the draft master plan
Not enough replacement customer and trader car parking.
Difficult to access tram stop on Elizabeth Street with a trolley.
Unrealistic expectation to move people from cars to public transport, given
existing transport is at capacity.
Intersection of Elizabeth Street and Therry Street needs to be thought through
to minimise potential conflicts.
Bus station needs to be closer to the tourist hub.

Priorities for final master plan
Car parking – consider parking validation schemes and other forms of loyalty discounts for customer parking.
Market needs many more car parks than it has now.
Respond to the needs of weekly shoppers who have lots of shopping and need a car.
Retain heritage fa├žade on Munro Site.
Keep the deli, meat, fruit and veg together in Quarter 1.
Improve pedestrian comfort within the market environment, cooler on hot days
and warmer and drier on cold/wet days.
Focus on families.
Improve climate within the sheds, for example ceiling fans (whirlies).
Access to power.
Dealing with OH&S issues.

Other key considerations
Move of wholesale market to Epping may increase need for more storage and refrigeration at QVM.
Will traders be forced to trade longer days/hours? Will there be additional fees
associated with additional trading hours?
Careful management of construction activity.
Clarification of whether car park numbers include trader parking?
Selection of street trees to consider pollen and impact leaves dropping on traders, as well as shade.
Need to promote both night AND day markets.
One participant suggested the market needs 5000 car spaces.
Shuttle bus to transport people to train station/other car parks.
Need to increase the frequency of cleaning the market.
City of Melbourne staff need to experience first-hand how the market works.

Distribute food vendors throughout all parts of the market for better food access.


Sunday, 5 April 2015

Latest Retail News – 5/4/2015

Latest Retail News – 5/4/2015
1. Government starts wide-ranging debate on GST reform.
2. Red Rooster to launch home delivery app.
3. ACCC challenges use of “Aussie Beer” name for Chinese beer.
4. More Australians buying veges online.
5. Federal budget expected to test consumer confidence.
6. Origin Energy and Energy Australia fined $millions over sales tactics.
7. Heinz US to buy up Kraft and form fifth largest food company.
8. New AfterPay service allows customers to pay for online purchases after receipt of goods.
9. High end luxury label Net-A-Porter reported to be purchased by Amazon, now set to merge with Italian fashion label, Yoox.
10. Marks & Spencer says clothing sales starting to grow again.
11. High Street sales in UK show biggest decline in 3 years during March.
12. Toy wholesaler, Funtastic, reports $29m loss.

Harry's Back

Harry The Calypso King was a key performer in the Trader's Giveaway promotion leading into Christmas 2014.  Apart from a couple of gigs at the special Sunday markets in the top end he has been absent from our market since. But this weekend we got the full treatment as he entertained his way up every aisle in the market, much to the delight of traders and customers. Harry's brand of foot-tapping, easy listening music seems well suited to our market environment.


QVMAC Trader Representatives have asked management for another Trader Giveaway event and July school holidays looks to be the target. The event will require trader commitment before it goes ahead and we hope to have details soon including a re-vamped program of two draws per day and a shopping-voucher-only prize (no cash). Full details to come.


Friday, 3 April 2015

Traders Workshop - General Merchandise (Second Group)


Here is a summary from the trader's workshop on 16th March involving Specialty Merchandise Traders.


SUMMARY – Monday 16 March 2015 Trader Discussion Group #5: General Merchandise

Provided below is a summary of the key messages and themes discussed at the trader discussion group held on the 16 March 2015.
 Note: these comments may have been paraphrased to reflect a range of similar comments associated with a single theme or issue.

Strengths of the Draft Master Plan
J Shed pedestrian link works already (don’t move traders from along the wall).
Fixed trading locations.
Plan for ongoing communication, engagement and consultation workshops.
Customer/trader amenities (toilets).

Weaknesses of the Draft Master Plan
Timeframes for delivery are unclear.
Loss of on street parking.
Uncertainty – where will traders end up?
Detail around ongoing communication with stakeholders.
Too much focus on events may impact other parts of QVM.

Priorities for Final Master Plan
Keeping the market “a family market”– don’t try and replicate Federation Square.
Car park management .
Public seating/shade.
Maintaining loading operations.
Early wins.
Services – ATMs and international currency exchange.
Bus parking.
Trader participation in assisting with operational planning.
F-shed weather protection.
Even distribution of public toilets.

Other Key Considerations
QVM needs a Christmas tree and more decoration.
Impacts on traders.
Why remove car park?
No more plane trees please .
Operational improvements, i.e. forklifts and cleaning.
Layout and format.
QVM need to action some small wins to build trust with traders.
MMW – not a market event.
Social Kitchen did not work for traders.
Traders understand customer views and can communicate these to QVM management.
Manage cause and effect.