KITCHENER -- The Kitchener Market has opened an online store to help residents support local businesses from the comfort of their homes.

The online store launched Monday and offers more than 500 products, including meats, cheeses and fresh produce.

The store will open on Saturdays at 5 p.m. and stay open until Thursday at noon. People can pay for their products online and pick up in the upper hall of the market on Saturdays between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.

“The Kitchener Market has always strived to connect the community with local vendors. With our new online shop, we’re giving market shoppers more options – to shop online or in-person,” Kitchener Market Manager Cameron Dale said in a news release. “The new Kitchener Market Online Shop gives people who prefer not to shop in-person access to their favourite local vendors online and quick access to pick up and go.”

The market is still open for in-person shopping from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays, with public health guidelines in place.

“The Kitchener Market is still a big part of many residents’ Saturday routine. I’m there every week and I’ve heard lots of positive feedback that the strict protocols make people feel safe to shop,” said Coun. Sarah Marsh in the release. “For now, though, we have had to press pause on all the programming that usually make it a destination for connecting in community. I’m excited for the opportunity this new online store will offer for additional shoppers to support our local vendors. More and more people are choosing to shop online, and this will make it easier to choose local.”

Anyone picking up an order should bring their order confirmation for proof of purchase at the market pick-up point.