How Markets Can Help Farmer Vendors: Strengthen Producer-Only Rules

To better understand the evolving needs of farmers markets and the farmers who sell at them, American Farmland Trust and the Farmers Market Coalition teamed up with C2It Marketing to complete a national survey of farmers who sell at farmers markets. This is part of a series of posts on the results of this survey. Read the other posts here.

Direct-marketing farmers were asked, “What could be done to help you and your farmers market be more successful?

Creating and enforcing rules that prioritize or only allow local, farm-based products produced by the vendor.

Truth & Transparency: Farm Audits for Producer-Only Integrity

Truth & Transparency: Farm Audits for Producer-Only Integrity

Many respondents highlighted the importance of being transparent, clear and strict about rules concerning what types of products and vendors are allowed at markets. Many wish their market prohibited resale of items or at least prohibited resellers from claiming they grew or made the products they were selling.

Here are two representative comments:

  • “I’m not a fan of non-producer markets. We only do one market now as the others did not enforce producer rules.”
  • “Our market needs to insist on locally produced items and that vendors are producing the items they sell themselves”

Read about how the Nashville Farmers Market went producer-only…

Read more about the survey responses…


About the Survey:

The Direct Market Farmers: National Survey, conducted in March 2015, yielded an impressive response from over 1,500 farmers and ranchers across the United States, benchmarking this survey as one of the largest of its kind completed on record.

US-based farmers and ranchers invited to participate in the survey were selected based on their online presence (e.g. email, website, food/agriculture directory, etc.) and an indication of participation in the following activities:

  • Farmers markets and/or CSAs
  • Selling directly to consumers
  • Local, regional and/or federal agriculture programs
  • Educational studies