Market Managers

New England Farmers’ Market Managers Seminar
Staying Relevant: From Year One to Year 40

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Download a pdf of the full program here. 

7:00 am – 8:00 am:          Registration and Coffee

8:00 am – 9:30 am:          Attend the Conference Keynote:  Charting the Course through Demographic Change
Explore the common sense, but very counter-intuitive and fascinating realm of demography. Ken Gronbach brings you into his world of counting people. Ken is a marketer who has immersed himself in nineteen years of proprietary demographic research. His understanding of worldwide demographics, fertility, migration, aging, immigration and dying have enabled him to forecast societal, political, economic, cultural and commercial phenomena with uncanny accuracy. What nations are demographically doomed? How will the workforces change? What is the future of communications? How will our children’s children get their education? Will big data change marketing and branding forever? What is the fate of mass media? What countries and continents are demographically positioned to excel. Learn this and more from Ken Gronbach’s presentation. Don’t miss it!

Speaker:  Kenneth W. Gronbach, President of KGC, Direct, LLC, Haddam, CT

9:30 am – 10:00 am:       Break

10:00 am – 10:15 am:     Welcome

10:15 am – 11:15 am:     How Values Impact Your Market
Farmers’ markets play an important social and civic role, as well as mercantile. Do all customers find a welcoming place at your market? Research shows that if a person does not feel instantly welcomed, they are not likely to buy or come back. Broaden your customer base by aligning values with farmers’ market practices, to make your market an inclusive, engaging local food shopping experience.

Facilitators:  Mia Kortebein, Program Coordinator and Devon Whitney-Deal, Local Hero Program Manager, Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture, South Deerfield, MA; Thea Upham, Program Director, Community Access, Farm Fresh RI, Pawtucket, RI

11:15 am – 12:15 pm:    Risk Management: Keeping Up With the Ever-Changing Rules and Expectations
Accidents, food bourne illnesses, property damage, theft and on and on…A discussion on identifying common risks farmers markets face and best practices for managing them.

Speaker: Jennifer O’Brien Cheek, Executive Director, Farmers Market Coalition, Miami, FL

12:15 pm – 1:15 pm:       Locally Grown Lunch

1:15 pm – 2:15 pm:         Intentional Recruitment: Marketing the Market to Vendors
What makes a farmers market attractive to a potential vendor?  How do you successfully recruit the kind of vendors your customers want at the market? What information does a market and a vendor need before deciding if there is a fit? A panel of farmers share what they look for in a market, why they stay or leave, and how managers and farmers can work together to achieve prosperity.

Facilitator: Lynda Brushett, PhD, Senior Partner, Cooperative Development Institute, Northampton, MA

2:15 pm – 3:15 pm:         Is it Local? Integrating a Traceability and Product Source Policy into Your Farmers Market
Customers come to market in search of the freshest, most local food available. With limited time and resources, how does a farmers’ market manager tackle the complexity of traceability and labeling? Hear from farmers’ market management teams, in different phases of policy implementation, about their approaches to this complex issue.

Speakers: Chuck Currie, Freedom Food Farm, Raynham, MA; Laura Barley, Market Manager, Mass Farmers Markets, Waltham, MA;  Ayn Yeagle, Growing Places/Leominster and Fitchburg Farmers Markets; Thea Upham, Program Director, Community Access and Sarah Bernstein, Program Director, Food System Enterprise, Farm Fresh, RI, Pawtucket, RI
Moderator: Edith Murnane, Mass Farmers Markets, Waltham, MA

3:15 pm – 3:30 pm:         Break

3:30 pm – 4:30 pm:         Leveraging Consumer Shopping Habits for a Successful Market
Understanding the types of shoppers and their habits is often an enigma in the world of farmers’ markets.  But what if it was better understood?  Could you adjust the layout of vendors at your market or recruit new or additional vendors to appeal to broader masses?  Are musicians, children’s entertainment, and cooking demonstrations positively affecting the bottom line for your farmers? Join us to discuss the quantitative data that provides clarity to an often vague topic.

Speakers: Jennifer O’Brien Cheek, Executive Director, Farmers Market Coalition, Miami, FL; Hannaford Supermarkets
Moderator: TBA

4:30 pm – 6:30 pm:         Attend the conference trade show. Reception in trade show starting at 5:00 pm

Market Managers Seminar Planning Committee: Lynda Brushett, Cooperative Development Institute; Erin Buckwalter, NOFA VT; Rebecca Davidson, MA Dept. of Agricultural Resources; Nada Haddad, UNH Cooperative Extension; Leigh Hallett, Maine Dept. of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry; Mia Kortebein, Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture; Edith Murnane, Mass Farmers Markets; Jaime Smith, CT Dept. of Agriculture; Leigh Vincola, Farm Fresh Rhode Island; David Webber, MA Dept. of Agricultural Resources