The history of Kinjo Yamato Municipal Market begins in the old "Caipira Market" (Hillbilly Market) or the"25 de Março of grocers products," (25 de Março is a region of São Paulo city, known for its cheap merchandise) as the place was called when it was located in the floodplain region of Parque Dom Pedro, becoming famous for the sales of fruit, vegetables and greens grown in the fields where Japanese immigrants worked. As an income supplement, these immigrants brought the products left over from the harvest to sell them in the center of São Paulo informally.

In 1922, the so-called Hillbilly Market  moved to Rua Cantareira number 377.The new site - which was acquired by the City of São Paulo – was until then used by Light (nowadays Eletropaulo), the company that settled the trams (which where one of the means of public transportation used at that time) in a sort of parking lot. Even now the cobbled streets are kept preserved.

Originally in an open space the market was – which now occupies a building area of 4,550 square meters - received in 1936 a donation of a roof that came from Scotland and would initially be used at the train station which was in Anhangabaú. But it was much later, in 1988, the year that celebrated the 80 years of Japanese immigration to Brazil, that the site was named Kinjo Yamato. The name was chosen to honor the first Japanese immigrant to graduate in odontology.

Today the Kinjo Yamato Market forms, along with the Mercado Municipal Paulistano (Mercadão), the Complexo Cantareira (Cantareira Complex). The two markets share some stories in common, not only in regard to the marketing of products. During the construction period of its neighbor the Mercadão, Kinjo was used as a building base. During the 1932 Constitutional Revolution it was used as infirmary, while the Mercadão served as a weapons depot.

Click here to get directions to the Kinjo Yamato Municipal Market, which is open Monday to Saturday from 3am to 3pm.

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