Category: Evaluation

2014 Local Food Awareness Report for Gulfport MS

Evaluation

In cooperation with their educational partner Real Food Gulf Coast, the year-round open-air markets in Long Beach and in Ocean Springs are actively increasing local food accessibility and affordability in South Mississippi. Inspired by their success, the City of Gulfport opened a market in 2013 to accelerate access to regionally grown, healthful foods for their citizens, including those living in the areas defined as “food deserts.” In September 2014, RFGC released a report on the challenges of local food awareness in the Gulfport area in order to assist direct marketing farmers and area farmers markets in addressing those barriers. The report is the result of surveys conducted with existing market shoppers and farmers at the Long Beach and Ocean Springs Farmers Markets and surveys with residents and farmers not currently using farmers markets.

Published January 22, 2015 Publisher Website Download Resource Survey

Fraud in the Farmers Market

Evaluation | Farm Inspection and Enforcement

Abstract:

Cities and towns around the United States host an increasingly common ritual: large crowds of local food enthusiasts in search of the fruits of regional agriculture. These consumers are not simply seeking out the freshest produce; they also flock to farmers’ markets in search of the many values attached to food that is sold by the people who grew it. Locavores prefer small farms to massive, distant agribusiness for freshness, environmental, social, and safety-based reasons, and they assume, when so assured by the market, that the food at the market is in fact local. And these consumers have not been, for the most part, deceived; the large majority of sellers who claim to sell local produce are very likely honest. But there are strong incentives for fraud: local produce can bring premiums at farmers’ markets, and the costs of packaging, labeling, and middlemen are greatly reduced. These incentives are sometimes too tempting to resist. Some sellers that claim to sell freshly-picked carrots have picked these carrots from a grocery store pallet, not from a field.Misrepresentations about the source of produce harms consumers who are cheated, and it damages the many honest farmers who lose their customer base. This Essay explores this troubling phenomenon and explores possible solutions. After examining existing and potential approaches to curb fraud, including market agreements and grower contracts, regulation, and criminal enforcement, it suggests a hybrid system. Where consumers can distinguish between locally-grown and mass-produced products and there is competition among markets, markets should — and likely will — adopt and enforce rules for monitoring and enforcing food source claims. But where it is difficult for consumers to identify product sources or competition is weak, more regulation is needed: states should adopt clearer standards for defining and enforcing producer sales, and markets, which have local knowledge and staff already on the ground, should enforce them.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 30

Published October 31, 2014 Download Resource

Farmers Market Sustainability — Obstacles and Strategies

Evaluation | Management and Operations | Public Policies

This report, initiated by the City of Seattle for the Regional Food Policy Council, identifies obstacles faced by Seattle farmers markets and recommends strategies for overcoming them. Data was obtained through four monthly meetings of a working group comprised of farmers market organizers, City of Seattle staff, and other stakeholders. The Report also identifies best practices from around the United States.

Published July 25, 2014 Publisher Website Download Resource PublicationReportState & Local Policy

Countryside Conservancy Farmers Market Metrics Report-Prototype

Evaluation

Prototype reports were crafted for the FMC Farmers Market Metrics Project with funding from the Knight Foundation. To create these reports, FMC Executive Director Jen O’Brien and researcher Darlene Wolnik worked with eight markets to upload 2013 data into social media badges and user-friendly infographics. The indicators chosen were based on external audiences’ requests for that data and the strong potential for markets to have it collected. The markets offered feedback and ideas for future iterations of the reports.

Published July 15, 2014 Download Resource Survey

Oregon City Farmers Market Metrics Report-Prototype

Evaluation

Prototype reports were crafted for the FMC Farmers Market Metrics Project with funding from the Knight Foundation. To create these reports, FMC Executive Director Jen O’Brien and researcher Darlene Wolnik worked with eight markets to upload 2013 data into social media badges and user-friendly infographics. The indicators chosen were based on external audiences’ requests for that data and the strong potential for markets to have collected. The markets offered feedback and ideas for future iterations of the reports.

Published July 15, 2014 Download Resource Survey

Mississippi Farmers Market Farmers Market Metrics-Prototype

Evaluation

Prototype reports were crafted for the FMC Farmers Market Metrics Project with funding from the Knight Foundation. To create these reports, FMC Executive Director Jen O’Brien and researcher Darlene Wolnik worked with eight markets to upload 2013 data into social media badges and user-friendly infographics. The indicators chosen were based on external audiences’ requests for that data and the strong potential for markets to have collected. The markets offered feedback and ideas for future iterations of the reports.

Published July 15, 2014 Download Resource Publication

Winooski Farmers Market Metrics Report-Prototype

Evaluation

Prototype reports were crafted for the FMC Farmers Market Metrics Project with funding from the Knight Foundation. To create these reports, FMC Executive Director Jen O’Brien and researcher Darlene Wolnik worked with eight markets to upload 2013 data into social media badges and user-friendly infographics. The indicators chosen were based on external audiences’ requests for that data and the strong potential for markets to have collected. The markets offered feedback and ideas for future iterations of the reports.

Published July 15, 2014 Download Resource Publication

Carrboro Farmers Market Metrics Report-Prototype

Evaluation

Prototype reports were crafted for the FMC Farmers Market Metrics Project thanks to Knight Foundation funding. To create these reports, FMC Executive Director Jen O’Brien and researcher Darlene Wolnik worked with eight markets to upload 2013 data into social media badges and user-friendly infographics. The indicators chosen were based on external audiences’ requests for that data and the strong potential for markets to have collected. The markets offered feedback and ideas for future iterations of the reports.

Published July 15, 2014 Download Resource Report

SNAP Healthy Food Incentives Cluster Evaluation 2013

Evaluation | SNAP/EBT and Nutrition Programs

This cluster evaluation documents the strategically executed efforts and results achieved by four “healthy food incentive programs” to motivate Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) customers to purchase healthier foods with their benefits, and to address financial challenges experienced by local farmers. The farmers’ markets included in this cluster evaluation are affiliated with four non-profit organizations — Fair Food Network (FFN), Market Umbrella (MU), Roots of Change (ROC), and Wholesome Wave (WW).

Published May 23, 2014 Publisher Website Download Resource Report

Farmers Market Incentive Provider Study

Evaluation | SNAP/EBT and Nutrition Programs

As early as 2005 in New York, to attract SNAP participants to their markets, organizations that operated several FMs launched conditional cash transfer programs or incentive programs. At their most basic level, SNAP-based incentive programs (SBIPs) at FMs provide SNAP participants with matching funds to purchase SNAP-eligible food items. SBIPs vary in the matching funds they provide; for example, some programs provide a dollar-to-dollar match while others may provide a dollar for every $5 spent at the market on a given market day. Markets that offer a dollar-to-dollar match typically set a limit for such a match (i.e., the match is provided up to $10 or $20 per day).

SBIPs attract SNAP recipients and farmers to the market, resulting in a favorable impact on increasing SNAP redemptions and overall FM sales. As documented in several evaluations,6, 7,8,9,10 however, little information is available on why organizations support SBIP, funding streams for incentives, implementation approaches, specific roles performed within and across collaborating organizations, perspectives regarding long-term goals for SBIP, and the data collection and evaluation systems in place to monitor the use and impact of incentives at various markets. To address these gaps in knowledge, the FNS Farmers Market Incentive Program Study (FMIPS) focused on:

1. Understanding the characteristics of organizations involved with SBIPs, their SBIP objectives, role in SBIP implementation, and involvement in SBIP monitoring and evaluations.

2. Exploring the relationships among SBIP organizations and between these organizations and FMs.

3. Examining and assessing SBIP organization self-evaluation data to measure the impacts of SBIPs on the individual FMs.

FarmersMarketIncentiveProvider

Published May 23, 2014 Download Resource Report