More Farmers Markets Accessible with EBT

Farmers markets throughout the United States are growing more accessible to participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. As of the end of FY 2008, 753 Farmers markets were authorized to accept SNAP benefits nationwide, a 34 percent increase from FY 2007. While the percentage of redemptions is very little, the amount of funds going to…

Reports Identify Need, Strategies to Bolster State and Local Food Safety Roles

The Food Safety Research Consortium announced a new report, “Stronger Partnerships for Safer Food: An Agenda for Strengthening State and Local Roles in the Nation’s Food Safety System,” was released on APRIL 17, 2009 at an event on the campus of The George Washington University in Washington, DC. The report is the culmination of a…

Shopping at Farmers Markets Can Save Money

On April 15, 2009, Tim Robinson at Seattle’s King 5 News reported on a study conducted by students at the University of Seattle which found farmers market prices, on average, about 20 cents cheaper per pound than at local grocery stores.

People’s Garden Planned Next to USDA Farmers Market

In March, USDA Secretary Vilsack announced the People’s Garden Initiative, and broke ground on what will be a certified organic vegetable garden at the USDA’s headquarters in Washington, DC. The garden will be directly adjacent to the USDA Farmers Market, which is on Wednesdays, one block from the National Mall. In an inaugural meeting of the USDA People’s Garden Partnership Forum, Sec. Vilsack said that the garden is in keeping with his vision of USDA as leader in sustainability– “sustainable farms, sustainable diets, and sustainable rural economies.”

People's Garden Planned Next to USDA Farmers Market

In March, USDA Secretary Vilsack announced the People’s Garden Initiative, and broke ground on what will be a certified organic vegetable garden at the USDA’s headquarters in Washington, DC. The garden will be directly adjacent to the USDA Farmers Market, which is on Wednesdays, one block from the National Mall. In an inaugural meeting of the USDA People’s Garden Partnership Forum, Sec. Vilsack said that the garden is in keeping with his vision of USDA as leader in sustainability– “sustainable farms, sustainable diets, and sustainable rural economies.”

State Farmers Market Association Survey Highlights

Earlier this year, FMC surveyed 26 state farmers market associations (FMAs) to better understand how they are structured, what they do, how they do it, and what they need to do it better. This was the first opportunity FMC had to formally survey this group, building upon a 2006 study conducted by Project for Public Spaces, and the results were telling. According to the survey, while FMAs are growing in number and emerging as valuable service providers across the country, they infrequently engage in networking and professional development opportunities that would enable them to effectively support their thousands of member markets and producers.

Letting Customers’ Fingers Do The Walking: On-line Farmers Market Directories

Think of them as national online yellow pages for local food and farmers markets. The USDA National Directory of Farmers Markets and LocalHarvest.Org are the two biggest national directories of farmers markets and direct sales small farms. Now is the time to make sure your market information is listed and up to date on both…

FMC Pilots Educational Sponsorships in Three States

As part of its goal to support the efforts of state farmers market organizations, FMC recently offered small sponsorships to three of its members holding statewide training events. Pending future available funding, FMC plans to continue and expand its support of such educational trainings in 2009. What follows is a brief summary of the events receiving mini-grants so far this year.

New Outreach Tools to Be Available for Farmers Market Week

The Farmers Market Coalition is proud to announce that it will be offering a variety of consumer outreach materials to farmers markets this summer, just in time for National Farmers Market Week (August 2nd-8th).

Incentives and Investments Give New Nevada Market a Head Start

Last March, Marrone was asked by the Carson City Office of Business Development (OBD) to help them get a farmers market up and running by the end of June. The time frame, it goes without saying, was one of the biggest challenges in starting the market. “All the research said we should have started six months to a year earlier. We had fewer than three months, and there was already a 13 year old, highly profitable market in Reno. There are only so many farmers to go around, and they were spreading themselves pretty thin as it was. Convincing them to come to our market without any kind of track record was a hard sell.”