Save the Date: 2020 Farmers Market Managers Conference
The 2020 Farmers Market Managers Conference will be held March 3-4, 2020 in Kingston, NY.
More information to come.
The 2020 Farmers Market Managers Conference will be held March 3-4, 2020 in Kingston, NY.
More information to come.
The 2017 NYS Farmers Market Managers Conference was scheduled for November 7 – 9, in Binghamton, NY. However, due to low registration numbers, the conference was cancelled. At this time, the Farmers Market Federation of NY and its Board of Directors would like your input to help us understand why registrations were low so that we can make adjustments for future conferences.
We are also looking for input into how future educational programming for market managers should be delivered, as well as those issues that are foremost on your mind.
Please take a few minutes to respond to this short survey on the Farmer Market Managers Conference and future educational programming. Your input is valuable as we sort out our next steps for future conferences and other educational events.
Use this link to respond to a completely anonymous survey.
Please respond by November 22, 2017.
Diane and the Federation Board of Director
We are just 2 weeks away for the NYS Farmers Market Managers Conference. Have you registered yet?
Are you still on the fence? Let me tell you that this is one of the most relevant, information packed
conferences we have hosted in a while. The conference centers around the issue that we have heard
over and over again. Not just from New York market managers and farmers, but from markets all across
the country. Farmers markets are experiencing a downward trend in customer participation and that
means lost sales for farmers.
Each session at the 2017 conference is aimed at helping market managers better understand our
customers and our competition. Once we have a clear understanding, we will have an easier time
making the adjustments necessary to reach new customers, retain our current customer base and
increase sales per customer. In the end, we know that farmers markets should be at the top of the local
food system. But our competition is savvy and have been able to temporarily knock us off that top spot.
This conference will help put us back on top! So don’t miss out on this important event!
You can find all the information you need to attend at http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/overview/.
The agenda, registration and online payment and hotel information are all available here.
WE also have some new information from our Extension hosts at Broome County Cooperative Extension.
Our conference will take place at the new Ag Development Center in the Taste NY building across the
driveway from the Extension offices. Registration, vendor tables and breaks will be held in the atrium.
Coffee and tea will be offered in the atrium and tasty snacks and treats can be purchased in the Taste NY
store. Remember, everything in the Taste NY store is local so your purchases will be supporting local
farmers and food producers.
Plenary sessions will be held in the Ag Development Center, a beautiful new facility. Breakout sessions
and lunches will be held in the Broome County Regional Farmers Market, across the driveway. This new
facility hosts a year round farmers market, a community kitchen and classroom. Also, our evening meal
on Tuesday night will be held in the Farmers Market.
Our Monday Meet and Greet will be an opportunity for us all to get to know one another before
conference sessions start Tuesday morning. The Meet and Greet will be held in the Farmers Market. We
are asking everyone to bring something to share from your market; cheese, baked goods, veggies and
dip or whatever. Sharing your market’s foods will be your ability to show off your market and use as an
ice breaker to meet others who share your passion for farmers, markets and local food.
To see the new facilities at the Broome County Extension campus is worth the trip alone. But add that to
the wealth of information from conference sessions and from networking with market managers across
New York State and beyond, makes the 2017 Farmers Market Managers Conference a not-to- be-missed
Looking forward to seeing everyone in Binghamton, November 7 -9!
November 7 – 9
Fall is in the air this week. Temperatures are in the 70’s during the day and 50’s during the night. It
makes me start thinking about Fall events – like apple picking, hayrides and the annual Farmers Market
Mangers Conference. Yes, that’s right! The annual conference is coming up. We are scheduled for
November 7 – 9 in Binghamton, NY at the Cornell Cooperative Extension complex.
Have you made your plans yet? If you haven’t been to this conference in the past, you have an
opportunity to apply for a scholarship to help cover the expense of registration. This is your opportunity
to attend a highly informative conference, meet other managers from across the state, learn new ideas
and techniques and bring home lots of great ways to improve your market for the 2018 season. Any NY
farmers market manager can apply!
To apply, download the application at .
Complete the application and return to the Federation at
[email protected] But hurry! The deadline for application is September 25.
If awarded a scholarship, your registration fee for all three days will be covered, including lunches,
evening events and tours. If you need to stay overnight you will be responsible for your own hotel
accommodations. We have made arrangements at the Fairfield Inn to provide conference attendees a
reduced rate Hotel-information.pdf).
Scholarship applications will be reviewed based on the following criteria:
1. The proposed plan for implementing the lessons learned at the conference.
2. Need – i.e. making sure there is conference representation from the full diversity of markets
around the state – small, medium and large markets, as well as urban, suburban and rural.
Our goal is to encourage new attendees to the conference, giving them the experience and the
education. So preference will be given to applicants who have not previously attended a conference.
The decision will be at the discretion of the conference scholarship committee and all awardees will be
notified by October 13 th . You will have until October 20 th to accept the scholarship and register for the
No scholarships will be awarded for partial attendance. You must attend all 3 days.
Don’t delay! Get your scholarship application in today!
For a look at the full conference agenda, go to Agenda-updated- 5.10.17.pdf.
Looking forward to seeing you in Binghamton, November 7 -9.
Farmers Market Manager Training Conference “Creating Customer Friendly Markets” November 7-9, 2017
The Farmers Market Federation of New York announces its annual Farmers Market Managers Training Conference, “Creating Customer Friendly Markets.” The conference will be co-hosted by the Farmers Market Federation, Cornell Cooperation Extension of Broome County and the Broome County Regional Farmers Market and will be held at the Cooperative Extension offices in Binghamton, NY, November 7 – 9th. The conference will focus on helping farmers markets revitalize their markets to reflect the needs and desires of today’s customers. Recognizing that the world around us is changing at a rapid pace means that markets must continually reinvent themselves to remain relevant to today’s customers and maintain their position at the top of the local food system. However, recent reviews of markets sales and customer participation numbers have shown that we are experiencing a downward trend for farmers markets. This conference will build market managers understanding of customer trends, learn who are competition is and why they are being successful, and then offering techniques that can help to reverse this negative trend.
Each session of the conference builds on the overall theme of assisting farmers markets to recreate their position in their local food system, restore and build customer participation and improve farmer sales and profits. Speakers include experts in promotion and marketing, leaders in consumer research, farmers market competitors and managers who have been successful at keeping their markets relevant to today’s consumers and sales and profits for their farmers continue to grow. Each speaker will have powerful messages to conference participants to bring back to their own farmers market.
The 2017 Conference will feature daily tours to farms and local food businesses, including: Heller Farms, Farmhouse Brewery, Dutch Hill Creamery and Harvest Ready, a controlled atmosphere ag-facility. Each location was chosen to showcase the Southern Tier agriculture and food landscape and to give market managers a guided look into farm production and marketing.
Another new feature of the 2017 Farmers Market Managers Conference is a scholarship program to encourage market managers across New York State to take advantage of the lessons and networking that happens at the conference. To access the conference scholarship application, go to nyfarmersmarket.com/overview. But hurry, deadline for scholarship applications is September 25.
The Farmers Market Managers Training Conference is your opportunity to boost your skills as a market manager; network with others across the state and beyond; share ideas, suggestions and questions; and even make new friendships. Register now for the 2017 Farmers Market Managers Conference: “Creating Customer Friendly Markets.”
The full conference program, agenda and hotel information can be found at nyfarmersmarket.com/overview.
For more information, contact the Farmers Market Federation of NY at [email protected] or call 315-400-1447.
The Federation will be hosting our 2017 annual conference in Binghamton, New York on November 7th through the 9th. This year, we will be focusing on creating customer friendly markets. Click on Conference Agenda to view a detailed schedule for this year’s conference!
We are excited to announce that we will be offering conference scholarships again this year! These scholarships provide a wonderful opportunity for smaller markets with lower budgets, those who may not have attended a conference in the past, and people from further away who may have to spend money to travel to the conference to be able to attend. To take advantage of this opportunity, simply click on the Scholarship Application to download and print the file and fill it out. Email it back to us at [email protected] no later than September 25th to be considered.
If awarded a scholarship, your registration fee for all three days of the event will be covered, including lunches and tours. If you need to stay overnight you will still be responsible for your own hotel accommodations. Applications will be reviewed based on the following criteria:
Since our goal is to encourage new attendees to the conference, preference will be given to less experienced managers, those representing small and/or emerging markets, and applicants who have not previously attended a conference. The decision will be at the discretion of the conference scholarship committee, and all awardees will be notified by October 13th and then must accept by October 20th. There will be no scholarships for single day/partial attendance, so please make sure you’ll be able to stay for the entire conference if selected.
Please help us spread the word – Send this link to anyone you know who might benefit from attending our conference for the first time! Those of you who have attended the conference in the past understand the value that you get not only from the sessions, but also from the fellowship of being surrounded and supported by all the market managers from around the state who each have different experiences and lessons to share.
We hope to see you all this November 7th to 9th in Binghamton!
We’ve had a rush of registrations over the past few days as human nature is to procrastinate. So we are expecting a great showing at conference this year! If you’ve missed our recent posts about the benefits of attending, you can peruse them over at the blog.
If you’re one of the procrastinators and forgot to submit your registration, don’t worry. We ARE still accepting walk-in registrations up until the day of conference but you’ll want to act fast. From this point forward you will need to pay by check. The fees will be as follows:
As soon as you decide you are coming, please fill out the registration form here: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/2016-conference-registration/ and do not mail your check in as we won’t receive it in time. Please bring your check with you. You’ll receive an email as soon as you register with the location and directions. You CAN also pay your market membership at the conference to qualify for member rates, if you have not already. Membership fees are as follows:
It’s important to fill out the registration form if you are a walk-in so we know you are coming (and can make your nametag and make sure we have food available for you). Please contact [email protected] with any questions or issues. You can view the registration page and agenda below.
2016 Conference Registration
I hope everyone is having a productive Monday and a Happy Halloween! I know this time of year is busy for many of you as you tie up loose ends and prepare to close down your summer markets, but please remember that tomorrow is the deadline to reserve your hotel room and receive the conference discount. After that, normal room rates will apply and because this conference is in such a beautiful location (see the image above), the normal rates are significantly higher. Please remember that even if you got a scholarship, you still need to book your room!
For those of you who have not yet registered for conference, you’ll want to do so ASAP but whatever you do, make sure to reserve your room by tomorrow! We will still accept conference registrations for a while longer, but fees are nonrefundable after the 4th. If you missed our recent articles that go into detail about what you’ll get from each day of conference, here they are again.
For those of you who plan to arrive Monday night to get settled in, please join us for a Pre-Conference Reception:
Join the Farmers Market Federation of NY on Monday, November 14 as we host a pre-conference reception in the lobby of the Holiday Valley Inn. The reception will be our launch into 3 days of workshops, tours and networking opportunities. Hors d’ Oeuvres and a cash bar will be open from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm to welcome everyone to the Annual Farmers Market Managers Conference.
Tuesday we will kick off the conference with speakers, tours, and our annual banquet in the evening. Read all about it here: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/session-spotlight-tuesday/. If you have already bought your tickets for conference but did not purchase banquet tickets, make sure to return to the payment page and purchase banquet tickets – you do not want to miss this! Tuesday at 6:00 pm we will enjoy a local foods dinner with featured speaker Tom Rivers, author of “Farm Hands: Hard Work and Hard Lessons from Western New York Fields.”
On day two of conference, Wednesday, we will have a number of informational sessions as well as a second set of tours. Read the breakdown here: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/wednesday-session-spotlight/
Stay tuned later this week for a full walkthrough of the benefits of attending Thursday’s sessions. You can read all of our recent articles here or check out our popular article, 10 Reasons Not to Miss Conference
Join more than 60 managers from around the state who have already registered for conference for three days of networking, learning, local food and fun, and building our markets!
We tend to do a number of posts reminding people to register for conference because the half-life of a post on social media is incredibly fast these days – and with the busy nature of this time of year, market managers can often see a post and then forget to take action. But don’t relegate this to the back of your to-do list for too long! There are so many important benefits that attending a FMFNY conference can bring. Here are a few of the many reasons to attend:
1. For the interaction. The conference is your opportunity to interact with other market managers from around the state. These opportunities don’t come up very often! This is perhaps the most important benefit of attending conference because we all have different ideas. There could be something you’re struggling with but another manager has a perfect solution for (or vice-versa). You might even network with other managers in your area and create a joint program or service to add value to your market(s).
2. The information learned at the sessions is invaluable. We will be learning from experts on topics such as: Market Manager Compensation, Succession Planning, Managing Vendor Diversity, Food Preparation at Markets, SNAP Best Practices and more. There might be a critical component to managing a market that you aren’t aware of or programs that your market could benefit from that you aren’t familiar with. Attending the workshops and sessions is a wonderful way to be exposed to the most critical topics and concepts relevant to farmers markets in New York State. We have been running these conferences for over 10 years so we know what works and what doesn’t!
3. The chance to get away! This year’s location at the Holiday Valley Resort is breathtaking. Check out their Photo Gallery. Amenities include free wi-fi, complimentary breakfast, a heated pool, and fitness center, and an on-site restaurant and bar. Who doesn’t need a few days away from home and a change of scenery every once in a while? You’ll come back refreshed, energized and ready to take on the challenges of running next year’s market with full steam ahead.
4. The food. You may not be aware of this, but we generally source the food for the included meals locally and make a point to support the local farms in the area. For those dinners on your own (or with new friends and colleagues) there are a bunch of good restaurant options in the area too.
5. The fellowship. What goes better with great food than great company? Come alone and make a new friend or two. Stay in touch and follow each other’s progress and you build your markets and grow as professional market managers too.
6. The tours. Tours are always a popular part of our conferences and we’ve got lots of them this year – farms, a food hub, and a local brew pub! Tour locations include The Eden Valley Co-op/WNY Food Hub, Ellicottville Brewing Company, Blue Hill Farm, White Cow Dairy, and Canticle Farms. Each location was chosen to showcase the Southern Tier West agriculture and food landscape and the tours will give market managers a guided look into farm production and marketing. At Blue Hill Farm and White Cow Dairy, we will even get to sample several of the small-batch, handmade products such as custards, yogurts, and tonics, syrups, tinctures, and bitters made with the farmstead’s milk!
7. It could be free. This year for the first time we have a scholarship option. Please apply if you are a new market manager, someone who has not been to a FMFNY conference in the past, or if you could not otherwise afford to go without the help of the scholarship. Scholarships are taken from membership dues and will cover your conference fee and lunches if your application is approved (but you will still be responsible for your own hotel room). Click here to download the application and instructions.
8. To support FMFNY. Our membership numbers and attendance at conference give us proof when it comes time to write grant applications of the number of markets we represent. Your membership and participation is appreciated because it allows us to keep doing the work that we do in serving markets, farmers and consumers throughout the state.
9. To see our smiling faces. You may speak with us over the phone at the Federation office throughout the year as we offer you programs and services to help you meet your market goals. For most of you, the annual conference is the one chance you have each year to interact with us face-to-face. We’d love to see you there!
10. Lastly, If you don’t go, you won’t know what you’re missing!
… its annual Farmers Market Managers Training Conference, “Building Capacity of Markets.” The conference will be co-hosted by the Farmers Market Federation, The Southern Tier West Regional Planning and Development and the Southern Tier West Farmers Market Network and will be held at the Holiday Valley Resort in Ellicottville, NY, November 15 – 17th.
The conference will focus on helping farmers markets build their capacity to grow and succeed for the benefit of their farmers, consumers, and host community. Our keynote speaker, Kim LaMendola, Southern Tier West Regional Planning and Development, will discuss the benefits that farmers markets bring to a community and help market managers understand the language needed to convey this critical message to government leaders. An evening banquet features Tom Rivers, author of Farm Hands: Hard work and hard lessons from the Western New York Fields. Tom’s talk is sure to enlighten and entertain.
Each session of the conference builds on the overall theme of building the capacity of farmers markets to grow and succeed, improve attendees ability to manage their market, advance their market’s potential for long-term sustainability, and promote a marketplace that achieves a mission of supporting local farmers. Participating market managers are also taught the importance of providing a venue for consumers to purchase locally grown nutritious foods, and serving as responsible community partners.
The conference will feature a series of break-out sessions for emerging markets, focusing on helping them to bring their markets up to the next level of success. Other breakouts will focus on experienced managers, talking about more advanced concepts such as best practices in SNAP programs at farmers markets.
The 2016 Conference will feature daily tours to farms, a food hub, and a local brew pub: The Eden Valley Co-op/WNY Food Hub, Ellicottville Brewing Company, Blue Hill Farm and White Cow Dairy, and Canticle Farms. Each location was chosen to showcase the Southern Tier West agriculture and food landscape and to give market managers a guided look into farm production and marketing. At Blue Hill Farm and White Cow Dairy, we will sample several of the small-batch, handmade products such as custards, yogurts, and tonics made with the farmstead’s milk and other ingredients such as handmade tonics, syrups, tinctures, and bitters.
Another new feature of the 2016 Farmers Market Managers Conference is a scholarship program to encourage market managers across New York State to take advantage of the lessons and networking that happens at the conference. To access the conference scholarship application, go to http://www.nyfarmersmarket.
The Farmers Market Managers Training Conference is your opportunity to boost your skills as a market manager; network with others across the state and beyond; share ideas, suggestions and questions; and even make new friendships. Register now for the 2016 Farmers Market Managers Conference: “Building Capacity of Markets.”
Special thanks to this year’s conference sponsors: Premier Marketing, ManageMyMarket, Karen Karp and Partners and LeadNY.
The full conference program, agenda and hotel information can be found at http://www.nyfarmersmarket.
The 2016 NYS Farmers Market Managers Conference, “Building Capacity of Farmers Market” will be held November 15 – 17 at the Holiday Valley Resort in Ellicottville, NY. The conference is sponsored by the Southern Tier West Regional Planning and Development Agency and the Southern Tier West Farmers Market Network.
This year’s conference is designed to reach smaller markets and inexperienced market managers to help build their management skills and raise the level of success for small markets. Other sessions will focus on the issues facing larger, more experienced markets and managers. The 2016 conference is for everyone!
Of the many issues we will be looking at, managing the vendor diversity in markets is a key discussion happening across the state and being covered at the conference. Another session will focus on best practices for building a successful SNAP program at farmers markets. A panel of speakers will share their experiences and success stories.
Along with 3 days of workshops, the conference will feature an industry tour each day of the conference. Come along to visit the WNY Food Hub and learn the role that food hubs play in a local food economy. Enjoy a tour of Ellicottville Brewing Company and sample their local beers. Our final tour will be Canticle Farm. This is a teaching farm, helping to build the next generation of farmers. Along with teaching production skills, the farm also sponsors a farm stand, CSA and farmers market, providing marketing education as well.
Another feature of the 2016 Annual Farmers Market Managers Conference is a new scholarship program. If you need financial assistance to attend the conference, complete the Scholarship Application and submit to the Federation office no later than September 26, 2016.
Mark your calendars for November 15 – 17, 2016 and join us as we convene in Ellicottville, NY for the 2016 NYS Farmers Market Managers Conference. All information about the conference can be found here: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/annual-conference/ or take a peek at the Conference Agenda, Conference Registration, or Hotel Information.
Our Annual Conference will be in November this year and we already have a great lineup of sessions and speakers planned! We are still looking for a speaker or a panel of speakers for the following topic so we’re reaching out to you for help. Do you know someone who is knowledgeable on the following topic? Or maybe you’d like to nominate yourself? The session will be on Managing Producer Diversity – i.e. insuring you have the right product mix in your market. Here’s the full session description:
Managing Vendor Diversity
Managers plan their market’s vendor mix to ensure each vendor can earn enough to sustain their business, while still providing enough choices for consumers. How many produce vendors can your market support? How many meat vendors? What is there enough of at your market and what is missing that might be needed? Many new managers ask themselves: “How does a manager maintain the right balance?” Learn tried and true techniques on managing vendor mix from these successful farmers market managers.
If you feel that you could add your expertise to the panel or you know of someone who would be a great fit, please reply to this email and let us know. There are some perks to being a speaker too. Conference speakers receive free admission to the conference for the day they speak as well as the chance to help other managers around NY state.