MOUNT VERNON, Wash. — What direct marketing strategies work for local farmers? How do growers get into the best farmers’ markets? What are the costs of operating roadside stands? How do growers find out what consumers want?
Local farmers can get answers to these and other direct marketing questions at the “Farm-to-Wallet” workshop being offered here, Friday, March 5, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The workshop will be held at the Washington State University Mount Vernon Research and Extension Unit, 16650 State Route 536.
WSU small farms direct marketing specialist Vance Corum will lead the workshop. Corum developed farmers’ markets in southern California throughout the 1980s and is co-author of “The New Farmers’ Market: Farm-Fresh Ideas for Producers, Managers & Communities.”
Corum will provide tips for success using a variety of direct marketing strategies ranging from roadside stands and U-pick operations to farmers’ markets, to marketing to restaurants, retailers and wholesalers. Participants will have the opportunity to develop their own farm marketing plans.
Farmers today feel like they’re backed into a corner as food retailers increasingly shift to grower contracts,” says Corum. “But there is a new world of profit for family farmers who take control of their own marketing. That’s who this workshop is for.”
The workshop fee is $25 in advance, $30 at the door, and includes lunch and a binder. Advance registration is requested but participants are welcome at the door with prior telephone confirmation to (360) 428-4270.
The workshop is sponsored by WSU’s Small Farms Program with support from the USDA Risk Management Agency and WSU Skagit County Extension.
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