Farmers Market Metrics: A Quick Start Guide

Becoming a FM Metrics account holder

Please note: The 2017 market season is a closed pilot season; we are working closely with markets across the country to test our current system. We are also actively developing vendor management capabilities to work in conjunction with our data collection efforts, to provide a system that is mutually beneficial to all parties of the farmers market industry.If you would like to be informed when FMM is open to the public, please fill out this form.

The following pages explain the kind of information markets should collect, how to collect that information in ways that are statistically valid, what to do with the information once collected, and how to communicate it effectively to a broader audience.

Once you have paid your subscription for FM Metrics, these are the next steps:


1. Fill out the Metrics Audience Worksheet.

The Metrics Audience Worksheet helps your market decide which metrics to use, based on the particular needs and challenges of your market. Be sure to reference the full list of Available Metrics in Farmers Market Metrics. To make the most of the data you collect, metrics in this workbook are sorted by the type of data you collect.

2. Complete the Data Collection Worksheet.

 The Data Collection Worksheet will help you organize your markets plan for when, how and who will collect data.

3. Create an account on

Your account will be activated within 24 hours. Once your organizational account is set up, market profiles for each market that your organization runs should be created. Every unique location and/or day is considered a separate market and requires its own profile. For instance, if your market operates in the same location on Saturdays and Wednesdays, you would create two profiles. As all market managers know, a weekday and a weekend market can be very different in terms of products, amenities offered and even in the type of vendor. The profile will offer context to anyone analyzing that data.

4. Collect Data with FM Metrics. 

Once market profiles are created, data can be entered. FMC spent several years perfecting data collection methodologies that maximize insights without unduly burdening the limited resources that farmers markets often face. These methods can be reviewed in the Data Collection Best Practices section of the site. Occasionally, we understand that deviating practices are best for a particular situation; if you feel that your market will benefit from this practice, please contact Dar at

4. Want to Learn More?

The FM Metrics Masters Course takes a deep dive into the methodology of data collection, aggregation, and analysis. Take a look at the History and Context section.