Tag Archives: Federation News

Meet the future of your local food system

I’d like to invite you to join me in an exciting new venture that will positively impact both your business and the future of New York’s local food system.

 

The Farmers Market Federation’s goal is to strengthen our farmers and farmers markets. As consumers migrate to more convenient ways of buying food, we know we need to be competitive in order to empower our local food system and economy. That’s why we’re launching the FreshFoodNY app.

 

The app is a virtual farmers market that allows consumers to pre-order from New York farmers, and pick up their orders at farmers markets. By making local food available online, the app will enhance your current farmers market presence, while simultaneously driving new consumers into our markets – prompting them to invest their food dollars in your businesses.

 

The webinar is an introduction to our virtual farmers market and will explore how markets and farmers can engage in this exciting opportunity we’ve created for you. Our technology partner, Crave Food Systems, will be participating.

 

When: Monday, Nov. 27, 12 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Registration: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2203985738104588803

 

I’m looking forward to taking this first step toward the future of New York’s food system together.

Sincerely,

Diane

Get Ready for the Implementation of the NYS Farm to Food Bank Legislation

New York State farmers are well known for their generous donations to Food Banks, food pantries and other forms of food rescue. In 2016, farmers donated over 13 million pounds of food, the equivalent to 10 million meals, according to NYS Farm Bureau. But up until this coming January, farmers gave those donations without getting any kind of tax credit for them. NYS has enacted new legislation, the Farm to Food Bank Bill, allowing farmers to tax credit of up to 25% of the wholesale value on foods donated to food banks. This new law takes effect on January 1, 2018. That means farmers will be incentivized to donate even more food to food banks, further reducing hunger in New York State.

 

 

 

 

The Farmers Market Federation of NY is sponsoring a webinar, Tuesday, November 28, from Noon to 1pm. The webinar will help farmers understand this new legislation and how they can get tax credits on their food donations in 2018. Peter Ricardo, Product Donations Manager, Food Bank of Central NY, works with farmers all across the Central New York region, bringing in tons of food donations to the food bank and its sister organizations. Peter’s workload is poised to increase as this new legislation takes effect. And he is happy to see farmers get the tax credits they deserve and to see the Food Banks and food pantries stocked with healthy, nutritious and locally grown food.

Peter will be our guest speaker discussing the Farm to Food Bank Bill. He will explain how the process
works for farmers and will be sure each farmer on the webinar will leave fully prepared to follow the
proper procedures to claim their tax credits for all food donated in 2018. Following his presentation,
Peter will host a Q & A session to be sure all questions are answered.

The webinar is sponsored by the members of the Farmers Market Federation of NY and is free to all who
wish to attend. Registration, however, is required. To register, go to
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7309857151916738819

Once registered, you will receive a confirmation with a link to the webinar. You will also receive
reminders the day before and an hour before the webinar with your link to the live presentation.

For any questions, please contact the Federation office at 315-400- 1447 or email
[email protected]

NYS Farmers Market Managers Conference Survey

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.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NYSConferenceSurvey

Please respond by November 22, 2017.

Thank you,

Diane and the Federation Board of Director

NYS Farmers Market Managers Conference: Two Weeks to Go!

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
event.
Looking forward to seeing everyone in Binghamton, November 7 -9!

Open Today: 2017 Conference Scholarship Application Period!

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:

  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.

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!

 

 

FIRST NEW YORK STATE CERTIFIED FARMERS’ MARKET MANAGER

Graduates New Online Course That Helps Grow New York’s Farmers’ Markets

Nearly Four Dozen Market Managers Are Enrolled in the Course and Working Toward Certification

The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets and The Farmers’ Market Federation of NY, in partnership with SUNY Cobleskill and Cornell Cooperative Extension of Broome County, developed the first ever Farmers’ Market Managers Professional Certification Course in NY State: FMM PRO.  Since the program was launched in March 2016, 44 market managers have enrolled in the course and are working their way toward certification. Today, the Department and Federation are celebrating the first graduate of the program, Reed Proper, who is excited to lead the Old Forge Farmers Market in the new year.

The Director of the Farmers Market Federation, Diane Eggert, said, “We’re very excited to see market managers take advantage of the FMM Pro and the chance to professionalize the role of market managers, forging new partnerships, building customer relationships and providing greater opportunities for our state’s farmers. Congratulations to Reed Proper from the Old Forge Farmers Market on his achievement as the first Certified Farmers Market Manager in New York State.”

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “Our farmers’ markets are not only a wonderful source of fresh produce and local agricultural goods but also education for consumers—a place for them to connect with the farmers who are supplying their food.  By providing this valuable training to market managers, we’re helping to provide the tools they need to successfully operate and grow their markets.  The Department congratulates the program’s first graduate, Reed, and encourages other market managers to pursue their certification.”

SUNY Cobleskill Associate Professor, Agricultural Business Management Jason R. Evans, Ph.D. said,The FMM Pro certificate program provides a tremendously valuable service to professionals in New York’s direct-to-consumer food sector.  Market managers can utilize the principles and best practices gleaned from this program to run better markets, which means more efficient and less costly marketing efforts for producers and better experiences for consumers that translate to strong demand.”

The goal of FMM Pro is to grow and professionalize New York’s farmers’ markets by providing expert training to those who run markets, making them certified market managers. New York State is now home to some 646 farmers’ markets, up nearly 35 percent from just five years ago.

Reed Proper, Old Forge Farmers Market Manager and the first graduate of the program, said, “I liked being able to complete the program at my own pace and at times that was convenient and also not having to leave home. And at 80 years old, it made me feel young at heart! With the knowledge gained from the farmers market managers certification program, I can create a more efficient market, have a greater nutritional assistance program for the local needy and have a better chance of qualifying for grants.”

The program, funded by Governor Cuomo’s FreshConnect Program, created New York State’s first ever market manager certification designation, which is formally recognized through the SUNY educational system and gives participants a credential they can use to garner support and enthusiasm for their markets.  FMM PRO is a part of the Governor’s ongoing efforts to open new markets and increase opportunities for New York State agriculture producers.

FMM PRO’s curriculum includes 22 unique training modules on the topics of Nuts and Bolts of Managing Markets, Reaching Out to the Market Community, and Building Systems. Each module consists of a video-based lesson, additional resources, a homework assignment, and an online quiz. The lessons are hosted on Cornell University’s online learning platform, which allows students to move through the lessons at their own pace, and receive feedback from instructors as they complete each unit.

Program participants who complete the full curriculum will graduate and receive a certificate, earning the title of Certified Market Manager. Completing the course will help market managers better organize, administer, and promote their markets. More specifically, as an FMM PRO Certified Market Manager, graduates of the program will:

  • Be fully knowledgeable in today’s best practices for managing farmers’ markets
  • Learn tactics to expand and optimize their farmers’ market
  • Be equipped to build successful relationships with farmers and shoppers
  • Be able to use their certification to leverage funding and support for their market

To learn more and to register for FMM Pro: Farmers’ Market Managers Certification Program and become one of the first NYS Certified Farmers Market Managers:

Check out the Curriculum, or

Sign up for FMM PRO

For more information on FMM Pro, visit http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/fmmpro or contact [email protected] or [email protected].

As soon as your payment is verified, you will receive a link and password to begin the course.

You can also view or share a copy of this press release.

Still Time for Last-Minute Registrations (But Act Fast)

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:

  • Full Conference – Member – $225
  • Full Conference – Nonmember – $275
  • Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday Only – Member – $100
  • Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday Only – Nonmember – $115

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:

  • 1 to 10 vendors – $100
  • 11 to 24 vendors – $150
  • 25 to 99 vendors – $200
  • 100+ vendors – $300

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

2016 Conference Agenda

Don’t Miss the Tuesday Deadline!

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.

Monday Night

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

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.”

Wednesday

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/

Thurday

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!

Reserve your space today at:

http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/conference-registration

Seeking Qualified Nominees for the Federation Board of Directors

Seeking Qualified Nominees for the Federation Board of Directors

 

The Board of Directors of the Farmers Market Federation of NY is currently seeking qualified nominees for upcoming positions on the Board of Directors. This is an excellent opportunity to help shape the future of farmers markets in New York State.

The Farmers Market Federation of NY is looking for volunteers who support our mission to support and promote the viability of farmers markets through innovative services, programs and partnerships that maximize the benefits of markets to sellers, buyers and communities.

We are seeking volunteer board members with an interest in helping to steer the future direction of the Federation as we strive to build the farmers market industry in New York by:

  • Training market manager to build vibrant, sustainable markets that support local farmers, consumers and give back to their host communities;
  • Support local farmers with marketing training programs;
  • Support local farmers and consumers by participation in the SNAP program and SNAP incentives;
  • Helping communities to understand the dynamics of hosting and operating a farmers market that supports local agriculture, consumers and the local economy;
  • Promotes farmers markets as the most effective means buy local and support local farmers.

Board members are required to participate in a minimum of 2 quarterly conference call meetings and one face-to-face meeting per year. Each member is also required to participate in at least one statutory committee: finance/audit, governance, membership, advocacy and programs and services. In addition, ad hoc committees are formed, from time to time, and board members are asked to participate in ad hoc committees that are of particular interest to them. Board membership is a three year term, with a limit of 2 consecutive terms.

We seek board members who are team-oriented, are willing to volunteer time and effort to the work of the Farmers Market Federation and bring their own unique experience and skills to the work of the Board and the Federation. The Federation invites you to apply for the upcoming election of board members to be held in March 2017. We currently have 5 openings to fill at that time:

  • 1 Eastern Region: Albany, Columbia, Delaware, Fulton, Greene, Hamilton, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Schenectady and Schoharie counties
  • 1 Northern Region: Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, St. Lawrence, Saratoga, Warren and Washington counties
  • 1 Metro Region: Bronx, Dutchess, Kings, Nassau, Orange, Putnam, Queens, Rockland, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester counties
  • 2 Western Region: Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Ontario, Orleans, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates counties
  • At-Large: can be from anywhere in the state

Complete the Potential Board Member Questionnaire here and return to Laura Biasillo, Federation Co-President, at [email protected]. To learn more about the role of a Farmers Market Federation of NY board member, click here. Deadline for questionnaire submission is January 21, 2017.

 

Could you be our next board member? We have some vacancies to fill this season so stay tuned to this post for an upcoming announcement.

We will be asking all potential board members to complete and return the following document for consideration:

Potential Board Member Questionnaire

 

10 Reasons Not to Miss Conference!

number-437928_1920We 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!

 

Register today at: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/annual-conference/.

Farmers Market Manager Training Conference

Farmers Market Manager Training Conference – “Building Capacity of Markets” – is this November 15th to 17th

The Farmers Market Federation of New York announces…

… 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.

holiday valley resort

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.com/overview.  But hurry, deadline for scholarship applications is September 26.

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.com/overview.  For more information, contact the Farmers Market Federation of NY at[email protected] or call 315-400-1447.

Are You the One? Looking for Speakers!

man-1020389_1920Our 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.

 

Updated Vendor Permit Requirements

rules-1339917_1280Do you have a vendor selling bedding plants at your market? Did you know that they are required to have a Nursery Growers License from the NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets? Making sure your vendors have all required permits is an important part of market management: That’s why we’ve put together a checklist for market managers.

We’ve recently updated our Market Mangers’ Checklist for Permits required for Farmers Market Sellers. This list is an excellent resource that will help you understand the various permits, licenses, and certificates that are required for sellers of commonly found products at your markets. While this checklist isn’t exhaustive, it serves as a general guideline to point you in the right direction. You’ll find a list of inspection agencies and contact information at the end of the checklist if you need more information or guidance. We hope this list will make it easier for you to keep up-to-date at your market. Please share this list with your vendors and staff as needed. We hope you’ll find this tool useful for your markets!

http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/wp-content/uploads/Vendor-Permit-Requirements-Revised-June-2016.pdf

We’re Starting a Blog!

     blog post header

to-do-list-749304_1280Our website has been an incredible resource for NYS markets and farmers for a number of years, but up until now we’ve always done our newsletter in a paper format.  Diane even remembers the days when (back before everyone had email), she had to print and fold the newsletter in paper format and send copies to everyone in the mail.

But times are changing and so are we!  We are excited to announce that for the 2016 membership year, the Federation is replacing the old quarterly paper/pdf format of our newsletter with our new blog and we’ll now be keeping you up-to-date on all things Federation and farmers markets right here on the website.

What this means for you:

You’ll now have a handy place to come to and see what the latest is, both here in the Federation office and around the state.  Just bookmark this link and check it often http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/theblog or if you prefer, subscribe to our email list if you haven’t already and you can read the latest there.  You might even get the opportunity to shine the spotlight on your market or farm or something interesting happening in your corner of NYS.

What this means for us:

We’ll be able to keep you updated more frequently by adding each article or bit of news as soon as it is relevant and keep the information timely. No more folding paper newsletters or formatting PDFs!

We’re also putting out a Call to Action for Market Managers and other agricultural stakeholders around the state.  We’d like to invite you to participate and make use of this space and take advantage of the great traffic we get on our site:

Got an idea for an article?  Shoot it our way. Or perhaps you already have some existing content you think we could repurpose or share.  Maybe you know about something our readers would be interested in finding out about.

Got photos of your market or farm you’d like featured on our site?  Great – we may be able to use them in an upcoming article.

Please don’t forget to add this to your “to-do” list.  Send all submissions to [email protected].  We will feature as many as we can in an upcoming blog article and/or email blast.  We look forward to seeing YOU featured and to continuing to provide you with the most relevant up-to-date information on New York State’s amazing farmers markets.

Welcome to the Farmers Market Federation of NY

Welcome to the Farmers Market Federation of NY

 

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The Farmers Market Federation of New York is a grassroots, membership organization of farmers’ market managers, market sponsors, farmers and market supporters. Together, we have developed a spectrum of services to increase the number and capacity of farmers’ markets in the state, develop the scope of professionalism in farmers’ market management and improve the ability of markets to serve their farmers, their consumers and their host communities. On our site we have resources for market managers, resources for market farmers/vendors, and resources for farmers market customers as well.  Take a look

Resources for Market Managers:

On this site you’ll find support materials that will guide you to the successful development, implementation and operation of farmers’ markets. Everything from publications and guides to research to reporting tools are available to assist you in market development and management.

If you’re just getting started, you’ll want to check out our 63 page Guide to Developing a Community Farmers Market along with the other resources and publications on our Market Management & Operations page.  You’ll find the networking opportunities through the Federation’s list serv, sponsored by Cornell University’s Community, Food and Agriculture Program, will keep you plugged in to market managers across the state for instant feedback to your questions and concerns. We also have a secret Facebook group to allow market managers and others involved in the field of farmers markets to connect, discuss, and resolve issues within a group of peers. Email [email protected] with the email associated with your Facebook account if you want to be added to the group. In addition, you can connect with other managers in person at our annual conference which is generally held in winter in various communities around the state. We’ve recorded all the sessions from last year’s conference held at SUNY Cobleskill, and turned them into New York State’s first Farmers Market Manager’s Certification Program: FMM Pro in partnership with SUNY and Cornell Cooperative Extension Broome County. Market managers, prospective managers, and those involved in the field of agriculture or ag education have one year from the date they first sign in to complete the course which consists of over 20 hours of videos, handouts, homework assignments and quizzes. Upon completion, the participants will be armed with all the knowledge needed to run a successful market, along with a certificate signed by the Federation, CCE, and the SUNY system showing they are now a certified manager, allowing them to leverage additional funding and support for their markets. The Federation also helps markets get into the EBT program so their farmers can accept SNAP benefits through a central terminal system. We offer discounted Farmers Market Insurance to our market members. You can check out our Membership Benefits and other Resources for Market Managers as well. You can also list your market on our website! Go to http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/add-your-market/ to add a new market or to update your existing listing(s) today. Keeping your listings accurate helps us to serve you better and helps customer and farmers find you more easily.  Feel free to reach out to us at (315) 400 – 1447 or email [email protected] with any questions. 

Resources for Market Farmers/Vendors:

Support programs that directly benefit the farmers participating in New York’s farmers markets are a big part of the Farmers’ Market Federation of NY’s mission as well. We offer a Farmers Market Decision Tool where farmers and other market vendors can input information about your products, production methods, and location and be given a list of new potential markets who are looking for vendors like you! The farmers market Vendor Insurance Program is instrumental in keeping markets and farmers profitable and safe. We also offer SNAP program assistance for farmers looking to accept SNAP/EBT at their Farmstand, PYO operation or farmers markets they may attend that don’t use a central SNAP terminal. In addition, we offer several free guides on Farm Business & Marketing as well as Food Safety Topics for Farmers.

Resources for Market Consumers:

Finally, we encourage consumers across the state to visit their local farmers’ market. Experience the colorful abundance of nutritious, high quality New York state foods, the aroma of fresh produce and the friendly banter of farmers and customers, neighbors and families. A visit to a farmers’ market is an adventure, one that can be experienced every week in your own community. We now have a dedicated website for farmers market consumers – please visit http://www.nylocalfood.com for tips on shopping at your local farmers market, helpful fillable shopping lists and things to consider when choosing what to buy at the market. You can also use our market locator here: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/summer-markets to find a summer market near you, or check our winter market listing here: http://www.nyfarmersmarket.com/winter-markets. You can also check the Department of Agriculture’s Map of Markets as well.  If you use SNAP benefits, you can now shop at many NYS markets using your EBT card. You can visit http://www.snaptomarket.com, our website geared towards SNAP consumers, to find a market that accepts your benefits and search for recipes using healthy local fruits and veggies or find out what’s in season this month as well.

 

 

 

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Mission Statement

Our mission is to support and promote the viability of farmers’ markets through innovative services, programs and partnerships that maximize the benefits of markets to sellers, buyers and communities.