Dear Hard-Working Farmers Market Manager: You Are Not Alone
Posted On: November 15, 2016
Every farmers market, no matter how small, has an impact on local food. And every farmers market manager runs into challenges that are shared by others throughout the nation. Rest assured, fellow managers, you are not alone.
It takes hard work to run a farmers market. It requires a lot of muscle, a nimble mind, and a multifaceted skill set: a creative flair for marketing, a practical acumen for business, a delicate touch for customer service, a toe-the-line understanding of every regulation under the sun, the charm to fundraise like there’s no tomorrow – and the list goes on.
It’s a breathless job, managing a farmers market, and the hats we wear are many.
But, we do it because we find purpose in the work. Because the work needs us. Because our hearts are tied to the farmers who rely on our efforts to keep the lights on, and to our loyal customers who return week after week, seeking good food rain or shine.
As a start-up market manager in Augusta, GA, I’d been struggling with logistics that kept me up at night. How do I write market guidelines? Can I run my market as a nonprofit organization? How can we accept SNAP benefits at market? And what about insurance?
Then I discovered the Farmers Market Coalition. FMC’s website and staff revealed a treasure trove of answers and provided the tools I needed to build our market from the ground up.
Since then, our organization has grown by leaps and bounds. As I witness the amazing impacts of the market within our community, and the simple way good food brings people together, I know there’s no other job I’d rather do. At market, we find common ground. At market, we prosper.
But a market manager’s job is never done. As we continue to grow, so does the complexity of our goals, and thankfully FMC is there every step of the way. Their cache of best practices, and ideas gleaned from seasoned experience throughout the U.S. enable us to succeed to the benefit of our farmers and communities.
Please help FMC continue to serve as a support system for our hard-working farmers market managers. With a donation of $25 or more today, you will join the effort to unite our nation at market. I hope to see you there.
FMC Board member and Executive Director, Augusta Locally Grown