Market Manager Resource Center
|Getting Started||Tracking the Market’s Success|
|Funding Sources||Low-Income Customers|
|Regulations & Food Safety||Direct Marketing Organizations|
|Promoting the Market|
Disclaimer: West Virginia Cooperative Extension does not specifically endorse any companies listed on this website, but provides them as a resource to those searching for product information or general pricing of certain items.
National Directory of Farmers Markets A clickable map leads you to farmers markets by state. Also has links to farmers markets websites. Farmers markets listed at this site often are willing to share information on their by-laws, guidelines or mission statements.
Direct Marketing Business Management From ATTRA, this Guide covers everything from Pricing to Publicity
Establishing & Operating a Community Farmers’ Market (from the University of Kentucky)
Direct Farm Marketing and Tourism Handbook (from the University of Arizona)
Missouri Alternatives Center Extensive list of Extension publications on farmers markets including:
- Food Safety for Farmers Markets
- A Guide to Starting, Operating, and Selling in Farmers Markets
- Weights and Measures Guidelines for Sales at Farmers Markets, Roadside Stands and Other Commercial Outlets (Click on ‘F’ for Farmers’ Market)
West Virginia Business Forms Forms for registering as an LLC or Non-profit with the WV Secretary of State
“Analyze the habits and needs of your potential customers.”
Food and Society As an initiative of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Food & Society offers grants for programs dealing with food systems and rural development.
“With sales figures a manager can analyze whether a marketing campaign is effective. Trying advertising or promotional ideas with a cost is necessary, but if you can only rely on farmers’ anecdotal responses about sales going up, it is difficult to determine whether your expenditure paid off…”
Grassroots Pricing Index Search by product or by state to find prices for items sold at farmers’ markets throughout the United States. Become a reporter and list the prices charged for products at your market for the benefit of other farmers in West Virginia and beyond!
“The challenge is to be sensitive to both groups, farmers and consumers, without letting either side demand too much. Some farmers want monopolies but customer numbers will suffer generally if you listen. At least two vendors selling the same item in numerous categories is a good idea to start. You need to distinguish your farmers’ market from local supermarket competition.”
Temporary Food Service Concession Guidelines (PDF) from the WV Department of Health & Human Resources
Food Safety for Farmers’ Markets (From Kansas State University)
Safe Handling of Food at Open Markets (From Kansas State University)
Local Health Department Contacts To find regulations specific to your county
Food Routes Great reminders on the importance of supporting local farmers
Local Harvest A free database on which to list your farmers market. Individual farms can also add themselves to the online database, frequently searched by the public.
West Virginia Cookbooks From the WVDA, these printed booklets on preparing vegetables, meats, honey and more can be ordered free of charge for handing out at your market.
5-A-Day Brochures, posters, educational programs, and many resources for promoting fruits and vegetables.
Farmers Market Coloring Book from USDA, in Word or PDF format
About Produce Detailed nutritional information and recipes for fresh produce, published by the Produce Marketing Association and Produce for Better Health Foundation.
Seasonal Recipes from seasonalchef.com
“A Press release is one of our most useful and powerful marketing tools. The press release serves two purposes. First, it gets the information of our market before the public. Secondly, because a press release is a news story and not an advertisement, it gives the story, and therefore your market, credibility.”
Market Effects on Neighboring Businesses From Oregon State University
Surveying Your Customers From Oregon State University, the Rapid Market Assessment Survey method offers a fun way to survey your customers and strengthen the market.
Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program Details about this federal program for low-income women and their children, with information on how to accept the vouchers and contacts for application in West Virginia.
Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program Details about this federal voucher program and how apply to accept SFMNP vouchers.
North American Farmers’ Direct Marketing Association Non-profit association dedicated to the needs of the farm direct marketing industry. Projects and benefits are targeted for farmers, market managers, Extension and other government agencies.
Agricultural Marketing Resource Center Value-added agriculture resources
“Look at the organizations and activities in your area. Those organizations with successful fundraisers may want to use the market as a new location for their event. Let the library or the high school orchestra know that your farmers’ market is available as a fundraising site. This builds community support and also brings in publicity.”
Openair-Market Net A guide to Farmers Markets, Street Vendors, Flea Markets and Street Markets
National Organic Program Informs about production and certification requirements to sell organic products.