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Why are so many farmers markets failing? Because the market is saturated

By NPR

Farmers aren't producing enough to keep up with the number of smaller markets that keep popping up, often in close proximity to others. This results in fewer customers, unsold food and maybe closureRead full story

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  • Sumeet Shah
    Sumeet ShahBacking brands at Swiftarc Ventures

    Farmers markets are such a key lifeblood of town communities, and to see it being overrun to the point that they can't handle a limited supply of farmers is worrisome. Hopefully more markets can work better together.

    "Farmers markets are a key source of local food, but we'd like to see communities working together," says Eggert. "If five communities partnered on one market instead of starting five different markets, that one market would be a more exciting venue for customers and a more profitable

    Farmers markets are such a key lifeblood of town communities, and to see it being overrun to the point that they can't handle a limited supply of farmers is worrisome. Hopefully more markets can work better together.

    "Farmers markets are a key source of local food, but we'd like to see communities working together," says Eggert. "If five communities partnered on one market instead of starting five different markets, that one market would be a more exciting venue for customers and a more profitable market for farmers. We don't need more markets — we need stronger and more viable markets."

  • In central Ohio, many farmers are moving towards the option of CSA programs with options of delivery, conveniently located pickup spots like large corporations, schools and even gyms. With a large presence of agriculture in the area there is a lot of competition which is great for the average consumer but not so fantastic for the farmers as they have to price competitively against both big box stores and other farms.

  • Joanne Herzog
    Joanne HerzogBusiness Systems Analyst

    Perhaps local communities may want to look at what they charge local farmers and small businesses to rent space at the markets. Inour tow b, the market kis held im a public park, but the city council has made ut cost prohibitive for local farmers to participate. Instead, we get coops from across state lines filling the spots. Local farmers have lost an outlet for community support and attendance has fallen off significantly. All this because th e council chose to use the Farmers Markwt as a means

    Perhaps local communities may want to look at what they charge local farmers and small businesses to rent space at the markets. Inour tow b, the market kis held im a public park, but the city council has made ut cost prohibitive for local farmers to participate. Instead, we get coops from across state lines filling the spots. Local farmers have lost an outlet for community support and attendance has fallen off significantly. All this because th e council chose to use the Farmers Markwt as a means to cover budget shortfalls. Competing agendas have all but destroyed this community event in our small town.

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