2023SEPAC - Traditional Markets - First Day Cover
2023 SEPAC - Traditional Markets - First Day Cover for only GBP £4.01
The Small European Postal Administrations Cooperation (SEPAC) is an association of 13 European postal authorities. Each year, a joint stamp issue, bearing a common theme, is launched by all member countries within SEPAC. "Traditional Markets" is the theme for the 14th SEPAC joint stamp issue, which is set for release in 2023.
Outdoor markets are part and parcel of the Maltese way of life and offer the possibility of visitors grabbing a bargain. They are places where one can soak up the colourful cultural atmosphere, experience local characters, enjoy delicious food and participate in the chaotic atmosphere that constitutes the Maltese Mediterranean lifestyle.
Such traditional markets can be found all over the Islands and offer a vast selection of products including local food and beverages. Markets are typically held once or twice a week in various towns and villages, during the early morning hours and usually until noon. Tourists and locals alike are no strangers to the Island's markets and year-round mild weather allows for a constant passage of curious visitors. The larger well-known markets are located in Valletta ("Il-Monti") and Marsaxlokk, where the busiest periods are on Sunday morning. A more relaxed atmosphere is found in outdoor markets scattered around the Island offering clothing, shoes, household goods, toys, antiques, souvenirs, groceries, fresh fish and traditional Maltese snacks, such as "imqaret" and "pastizzi".
The set of two SEPAC "Traditional Markets" stamps issued by MaltaPost depict typical market hawkers at their stalls, within a traditional open-air market environment. These were designed by local artist Daniel Spiteri.
The 1.50 stamp features an outdoor market hawker in Victoria, Gozo selling fresh fruit and vegetables to a couple of tourists. One imagines some haggling taking place until a satisfactory price is agreed upon by both parties.
The 1.80 stamp features a local fisherman, at the Marsaxlokk market, descaling and cleaning "lampuki", the fish species synonymous with the Maltese Islands. He works from under a tent to shelter from the hot summer sun and is flanked by the colourful "luzzu", Malta's traditional fishing boat.