Best Practices

Common questions market managers encounter

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Many farmers’ markets set up in public parks, municipal parking lots, and other public spaces. There are a range of creative partnerships around the region, but sometimes misunderstandings arise, often due to misperceptions about the structure and operation of farmers’ markets. These are some common questions that come up in meetings between municipal officers and FMs, along […]

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New Food Sampling Policy

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Ronda Stone of the Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry recently issued this new policy to help ensure the safety of food samples at farmers’ markets: POLICY FOOD SAMPLING AT FARMERS’ MARKETS APRIL 13, 2016 This policy amends, updates and supersedes the previous policy “Sampling of Food Products at Farmers Markets” dated March 18, 2010. The […]

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Farmer’s Market Signs

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Where are Your Farmers’ Market Signs? Maine is largely free of the scourge of billboards, but at the cost of some fairly complex rules around signage (as recently outlined in an article in the Portland Press Herald). Fortunately, the state allows farmers’ markets more latitude than bricks-and-mortar businesses in the area of signage. Here is […]

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Marrying CSA to farmers’ market

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A debit-type CSA works well at farmers’ market I have attended farmers’ markets since 1983, yet the whole idea of a CSA has always fascinated me as a practical method to market my farm’s produce. Having customers get a box of food each week that they paid for at the beginning of the season seemed […]

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The Shō of Market

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In many Japanese martial arts, there is a differentiation between the SHŌ (say ‘show’) of the art and the DŌ (say ‘dough’) of the art. Basically, the DŌ is the functional part of the art, how to make the movements and what they are useful for, both in terms of spiritual centering and self-defense. On […]

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Food for thought about customers

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by Dick Keough, Brunswick Market How do you feel about your customers? How do your customers feel about your farmstand? Do you get cash tips from your customers? Do your customers give you gifts? Do you give needy people a gift of your product or a discount? Do you get asked to help local groups […]

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Setting prices synthetically rather than analytically

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Analysis tries to understand things by breaking them down into their components. Synthesis tries to understand a thing by combining and processing information in its surroundings. Do you determine your prices by building them up from their component costs? Or do you look at how your prices will fit into the entire market ecology that […]

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