eXtension Webinar Series: Farmers' Market Vendors
Mark your calendars! The eXtension Entrepreneurship webinar series is finishing the season with three presentations of interest to farmers' market vendors and farmstand owners. All webinars will air monthly on the second Thursday at 2:00pm (ET); 1:00pm (CT); 12:00pm (MT); 11:00am (PT).
On May 9 our webinar will explore Tracking Sales to Learn What Customers Really Think with Mary Peabody, UVM Extension. You have a great product! Your prices are right in line with the competition! Your quality is outstanding! So, what is the next step in direct marketing success? Well a good place to start is by learning who your customers are, what they think of your products and who is buying what. We'll take a look at some ways that you can learn more about your customers and your sales and use what you learn to improve your bottom line. We'll take a look at simple, quick and inexpensive ways to collect information as well as some more involved strategies that will get you more detailed results. Most of the information will be directed at individual vendors but many of the ideas can be adapted by managers to assess whole markets.
On June 13 we conclude our series with Ginger Myers, UMD Extension Marketing Specialist presenting Are you a Supermarket Vendor or a Super Market Vendor? While marketing your products at a farmers market is a great way to sell direct to customers and garner instant feed back about your products, it does require you work at providing customers with the best shopping and purchasing experience possible, if you want repeat business. Simply putting your products out and waiting for customers to make their selections and then pay you is the same as shopping at the supermarket. That's called transactional marketing. Instead, provide customers with a great shopping experience anchored by high quality products and you'll become a super market vendor. This is relationship marketing where the customer experiences a value-add connection with you as the producer. This presentation examine the traits of highly successful market vendors including market organization, display techniques, signage, communications at the market and through social media, and the vital customer service techniques used by super market vendors.
No pre-registration is required and there is no fee to participate. About 10 minutes prior to the start time simply go the Adobe Connect Pro meeting room at https://connect.extension.iastate.edu/etc-cop. You will be presented with a login screen that has an "Enter as Guest" option. Enter your full name then click "Enter Room" to join the conference. You will be able to hear the audio directly from your computer’s speakers.
- Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards of Fresh-cut Fruits and Vegetables
- National GAPs Website
- National GAPs Web Links
- Commercial Vegetable Production Guides, Oregon State University
- Integrated Crop & Pest Management Guidelines for Commercial Vegetable Production, Cornell University
- Nebraska Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association
USDA Farm Self Assessment Tool
Using the USDA Audit Checklist, assess your farm's current food safety practices. All audits must include the General Questions, then choose those additional areas that are required by your buyers.
- General Questions (All audits must begin with and pass this section.)
- Part 1- Farm Review
- Part 2- Field Harvesting and Field Packing Activities
- Part 3- House Packing Facility
- Part 4- Storage and Transportation
- Part 5- (Not Used)
- Part 6- Wholesale Distribution Center/ Terminal Warehouses
- Part 7- Preventive Food Defense Procedures
- Audit Verification Scoresheet