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Start a Farmer’s Market

What is it? A farmers market is a place for local farmers and merchants to assemble and sell their goods to local residents.  As a public space, a market also serves as a gathering area, where many positive community interactions occur.  By purchasing food directly from farmers, the shoppers gain greater awareness of their food sources and support local, small-scale agricultural producers.  Farmer’s markets stimulate the local economy because more of the money that might otherwise be spent in larger commercial stores now stays in the local community and recirculates.  Lastly, the markets provide ready access to fresh, healthy, inexpensive local fruits and vegetables which encourages healthy eating

How has it been used?  The SustainFloyd organization recently helped open the Floyd Community Market.  This open-air market in Floyd, Virginia hosts both a weekly farmers market on Saturdays and an artisans market on Fridays from spring to fall.  The market has helped support local farmers and artisans while building connections across the community.  The market space also serves as community center where all can gather, talk and have fun together.  Despite opening only recently in 2010, the market now regularly hosts at least 16 local food organizations, helping them stay in operation, building community connections, and expanding awareness about farming in the Floyd area. (Source: SustainFloyd)

Further Reading

Guide to Developing a Community Farmers Market – Farmers Market Federation of New York

Farmers Market Coalition