Cleveland Clinic market

Pics from my visit today to the North Union Farmers Market held at the main campus of Cleveland Clinic. The market staff person told me it is wrapping up its 11th year; how time flies from my first visit the year it opened.

This market is a classic example of the “campus” type so named in the typology of markets that I have written about previously, and once we start to see some data from Metrics and state level data collection efforts, can begin to flesh out these types.

Some time ago, I wrote up a case study on those markets that had used FMSSG funding for focus group research to better understand the perceptions of at-risk and low-income shoppers; while researching that, I saw that this market had used their FMSSG funding to do a Frittata Project with Clinic lap band/bariatric surgery patients to adapt that simple  recipe using different market veggies. I thought it was a great educational activity approach for a hospital campus market to incentivize behavior change. Very situational and intentional which is what I like about the North Union family of markets; each has its own focus and personality. 

PPS announces Cleveland as the location for 2012 International Public Market Conference

Hey market folks, this is a great conference to meet a varied group of market organizers, public space activists and decision makers. Cleveland will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of their iconic West Side Market and will also be able to show off many great projects focused on increasing markets, regional food and public space uses during the conference.
PPS will co-host the conference with the Ohio City Near West Development Corporation as the organization dedicated to developing, preserving, and promoting Ohio City, the neighborhood anchored by the West Side Market.

Join the PPS email list to get information about this conference and check out the “Green City Blue Lake” website to see what Cleveland has been up to lately.

Jeff Chiplis, Tremont Placemaker

During my extended visit to NE Ohio this summer, I have visited many markets, some farms and also met some excellent people thinking about their place constantly. Here is one of them.

Parking my truck on Jefferson after turning off Professor, I was lost in thought for a minute about the changes I was seeing in my old neighborhood of Tremont. Not that closed up storefronts or broken sidewalks should remain, but the saturation of shiny and new crowding this tiny corner of Cleveland was troubling. (For those who are unfamiliar with Cleveland or this part of it, Tremont is right next to what was the industrial Flats, and as such, had gone through some tough times in the latter part of the 20th century. Since the late 1990s however, its proximity to downtown and the city’s eagerness to think of the future as largely post-industrial in terms of infrastructure has meant this area has been transformed almost completely into an apartment and entertainment district.)

As I looked up from my musings, I noticed a healthy fig tree peeking over a beautiful, clearly handmade stone wall. I crossed the street to see it more closely and said aloud, ‘oh look at these figs! How lovely!”

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A voice amid the greenery said, “please help yourself.” I looked over and saw a smiling face working on wall repairs just a few feet away. I carefully selected a few ripe figs and walked over to meet my benefactor.

Jeff Chiplis has lived on this corner with his wife Cynthia since 1980, and has seen a parade of people, ideas and development, across the spectrum of good to bad to ridiculous and back again.  As an internationally known artist working with recycled neon signs, he believes in adaptation. So when he mirrors the best and protests the worst of developers’ and municipal whims in his work and yard, it should be noted by the powers that be.

For example, the utter lack of interest in reusing what was already here and the crowding of overly tall and architecturally bland buildings onto each redeveloped lot is clearly a source of frustration with Jeff.  That wall that the fig tree reclines on is an example of how he honors the past while offering his neighbors beautifully framed access to the green space he owns. His dad and he originally built it, using discarded bricks and stones. Regular repair work is necessary because vandals push over the top stones or pull the flat stones to bash against the sidewalk. As we chatted, he finished his small repair job, carefully scraping the rest of the mortar from his bucket, then offering me a tour which I gratefully accepted.

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The figs and grapes line the sidewalk next to the small house “painted Superman blue” he offers (assuming I understand the Cleveland connection; I do) allowing anyone to feast as they go by.  While there, I notice one 20-something ignores the bounty as she passes by twice with her large dog and smart phone at eye level.

Walking up the driveway between the Superman house and the larger brick one, he stops in his ground level studio to drop off the brickwork tools and to offer me a flyer from one of his latest installations around the city. The studio is floor to ceiling full of odds and ends, but somehow one can see that it is set up well for his use and offers comfort for anyone invited to stand among the signs, tools and materials.

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As we walk the garden, I see that is organized the same way. The garden beds are bordered with found and made art, and plants are allowed to define their space as they see fit during growing season.  Still, well-tended space is prominent between the areas of plantings and large trees on this corner lot.

The Harry Lauder’s walking stick tree was marvelous but unfortunately, was ailing while I was there:IMG_1287.JPG

although allowing him to adorn other borders with its cast-offs:

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Greens were doing well alongside flowering plants.

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Raspberries and currants overshot rusty fences and repurposed rebar:

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This berry was replanted from his parent’s garden.

The burr oak was not only resplendent in the middle of the yard, but allowed him to place this frame that another artist had no more use for once the art piece had been completed. So Jeff found another use for it and slipped it over the much smaller oak clearly just in time:

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The horseradish was added for no particular culinary reason but turned out to be a good neighbor to the other plants, anchoring this corner:

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I could have easily stayed longer. I almost did, but felt I needed to let him finish what is likely a long list of tasks in the studio and garden and home and neighborhood.

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Just in time, that fig tree reminded me that resident’s homes like the Chiplis’ place are as necessary and as important as markets and community gardens in serving their communities.

Mythbusting farmers markets

Myth 1: Markets (and by relationship all of community food) is only concerned with cozying up to the converted.

Myth 2: Markets encourage high prices for their items.

Myth 3: Markets are all the same.

But the largest myth about the farmers market movement spread by its detractors is that it is just about selling trendy food. Yet if selling food when trending had been the only aim, availability would artificially be kept limited, possibly even sold only by special invitation only or through bidding.

Instead, the farmers market movement has remained devoted to multi-faceted goals of building community involvement through remaining casually inviting, locally relevant, expanding the offerings and those accessing them each and every decade. The history of our movement makes that clear. And debunks all of those myths.

(•The history of the eras I am referring to has been written up by me many times before, and so not to annoy my long-time readers, I have put it to the bottom of this post.)

 

In the most recent era unfolding now, networks and cities interest in their markets has grown and deepened. Leaders are more comfortable with engaging with their farmers markets in terms of collecting and using data around wealth creation and creative output. Cities such as Pittsburgh PA, Austin TX, Minneapolis MN and Hernando MS, among others, are leading the way in partnering with their markets as both a platform for establishing grassroots metrics and for expanding awareness of the ecological perils of relying only on imports.

The last 45+ years show the intentionality and versatility of the market field and skewers the myths of any single origin. It also shows the effort to reach beyond food to include other assets and assorted civic leaders interested in building a new town square. And that market leaders are firm in the choice that design of the market should remain nimble by keeping most open-air or with easily-managed and low-cost infrastructure. That last point often frustrates city leaders or funders. That begets another myth, one where the market is not a serious mechanism for economic activity because of many markets’ use of secondary space, temporary structures and a refusal to go into storefront mode. The truth we need to share is that for grassroots initiatives expending time and money on infrastructure can solve some problems, but can also create others. So it is up to markets to find ways to show their serious intention to stick around without always resorting to brick and mortar. And when they do, to plan carefully and to allow for changes and other users of the same space.

Of course, there are other myths that need to be addressed in food system work. Scaling up, uniformity, efficiency are some others.

I’ll leave it to our dean of place, Wendell Berry, to take on some of those through a passage from his recent essay, “The Thoughts of Limits in a Prodigal Age” where he talks about capacity, scale, and form in agrarianism. He says: “It is a formidable paradox that in order to achieve the sort of limitless we have begun to call ‘sustainability’… strict limits must be observed. Enduring structures of household and family life, or the life of a community or the life of a country, cannot be formed except within limits. We must not outdistance local knowledge and affection, or the capacities of local persons to pay attention to the details only by which we can do good to one another. Within limits, we can think of rightness of scale. When the scale is right, we can imagine completeness of form.”

That triptych of capacity, scale and form has appeared on this blog before and will again because it so perfectly describes both the problem and the solution. It also encapsulates why the dominant paradigm cannot “see” us or work in tandem with us. It also beautifully describes the localness of organizing that markets know well. Those limits are exactly how our market founders staked a necessary place in their community and now can manage the outcomes of their projects or mission with respect to that place. So remember: Don’t hide the hard work your organization has done that is embedded in the decisions of location, products, procedures, and the goals of your market.  It’ll help bust some of those myths.

(history of market eras)

  • 1970s-1980s: Back-to-land farmers and ecological advocates begin markets. Their organizing principle is “Grow it to sell it” -a provocative statement at the time by the way- asking for a steady commitment up front from both the growers and the buyers to act honorably and collectively. These markets opened in places (interestingly, in a lot of university towns ) such as Madison WI, Carrboro NC, Athens OH, Berkeley CA, Montpelier VT.

 

  • 1990s: Community leaders, aware of those first growers-only markets, begin to open markets as holders of civic space adding a “learn together”/social cohesion motif to the grow it to sell it mandate. Places including San Francisco, Seattle, New Orleans, Portland, Cleveland, District of Columbia were the recipient of this round of founders. Interestingly, many of these leaders also became the founders of larger networks, including Farmers Market Coalition.
  •  

    1990s-2000s: Main Street markets in smaller towns and in rural communities add markets to their revival initiatives in towns like Ocean Springs MS, Natchitoches LA, and Durham NC. These markets encouraged value-added items and new non-farm vendors, focusing on incubating new businesses and supporting nearby Main Street initiatives.

  •  

    2000s: As technology advanced to allow at-risk populations to access markets with their EBT card, public health strategies became useful and the field of practioners and agencies in that field began to partner with and sponsor new markets to expand good food by getting markets in new places and adding public health incentives. One network that must be commended is Kaiser-Permanente’s markets on their own hospital campuses and markets such as Crossroads Farmers Market in Takoma Park MD.

  •  

    2000s: Deeply embedded, longtime organizers add food initiatives to their portfolio of activities, utilizing the community assets of residents and responding to their requests for markets. Markets in and around central Brooklyn NY like Brooklyn Rescue Mission, East New York Farm and the ReFresh and Sankofa Markets in New Orleans learn from earlier markets using the market mechanism to offer residents the opportunity to be both the buyers and the vendors.

After gastric bypass surgery, many experience eating difficulties

About 71 percent of the gastric bypass group, compared with 17 percent of the others, could not tolerate certain items, including red meat and foods high in fat or sugar. Water was not tolerated by about 7 percent of those who had had gastric bypass, vs. none of the others. The researchers found no link between the amount of weight people had lost and the digestive problems. Link to story

Markets could put small lists of available products together for different users of their market, including those who have digestive problems. It’s important to remember that many of these folks are just beginning to understand their problems, learning what works and doesn’t. I remember how, after my gallbladder surgery in 2007, I had to figure out what needed to come off my shopping list. It was through trial and error and asking a lot of questions and reading a lot of information that I was able to understand what worked best for me, but in the meantime, I had to give away or throw away some items I bought at first which used to be fine for me but were no longer. Another reason why vendors offering small “sample” amounts of different items can be a great way to invite new visitors (or newly fragile shoppers)  to become regular, return shoppers.

I know of at least one market outreach program that focused on these patients – the wonderful North Union Farmers Markets in my original hometown of Cleveland Oh.

Their frittata project is one of my favorite programs to pull out of my sleeve when markets ask me about ideas for working with obese or recently obese populations. (These programs make me seem smart even though what I really am is well-traveled.) Their project is shared with many other types of healthy food clients too, but I was really taken by the idea they had of working with bariatric patients through the Cleveland Clinic system.

 

More on their project:

The Frittata Project teaches young mothers (and fathers!) how to cook a nutritious meal on a budget to feed their family. The food used in the recipes we teach can be bought at our markets for around $10 (the amount we match in produce perks for EBT-SNAP/Ohio Direction Card). Workshops and demonstrations bring families together to learn how to sustain a nutritious diet while staying within their economic constraints. Our aim is to foster relationships in the community by empowering individuals to make informed decisions about the food they purchase while having the skills to prepare it. In addition to those on EBT-SNAP (Electronic Benefits Transfer- Supplemental Nutrition Assistant Program) and WIC (Women and Infant Children), the program is also open to senior citizens who participate in the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program by the Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging.

Our signature frittatas include farm fresh eggs, local grated cheese, a dash of grass-fed cow’s milk, and sautéed spinach seasoned with salt and pepper.

Students go home with not only new skills in the kitchen, but with cooking supplies (pan and spatula) and gift certificates for fresh and local produce from the farmers markets.

‘More on the history of this flagship market organization can be found here.

 

Structural racism and farmers markets, Part 1

With the recent uptick in the national conversation about racism and inclusion, I think it is important to talk about the inequities of food specifically in our communities. Those of us working for a just food system for all should be commended for the work we are doing, even as we are reminded of what remains unfair and unjust.
In my tenure in managing farmers markets in a city that has a majority of people of color, I had to acknowledge that the markets did not always reflect that reality. My organization, then called ECOnomics Institute, was founded on social justice principles and housed at a university center devoted to civil rights work so it was extremely important to us to advance its values. We certainly spent a great deal of time discussing how to reflect our community and to diversify our producers and were lucky enough to have activist farmers like Ben Burkett of the Mississippi Association of Cooperatives as part of the founding group. Even so, in the early years we were like many of markets back then: largely created and used by middle-class white community members or by educated back-to-land white farmers, both groups valiantly trying to expand good food and ecological stewardship for everyone but not always succeeding. Since then, the diversity has been increased both in vendors and visitors to those markets, as has the work being done by the entity now called Market Umbrella. The leadership continues to share their pilots with other markets and to increase access for local food to more residents of all socioeconomic strata – not just at their markets but at grocery stores, farm stands in low access areas of the city and in schools.

Part of the issue in the early days was the choice of locations. Often markets were given underused spaces in parts of town without much recent foot traffic or street-level retail, yet found themselves soon enough near or at the center of a gentrification push. Was it intentional or coincidental that markets chose gentrifying areas? Hard to know at this late date, but probably the promise of added nearby amenities and retail potential were vital for market organizations with little capital and few partners back then. Since those early days, the choice of locations has expanded so that markets now serve food deserts and areas with low supermarket access in thousands of places across the U.S.

In simplest terms, gentrification is the renovation and redevelopment of a populated area with one result most often being the displacement of folks from other socioeconomic strata, most often working-class families and people of color who had been left behind to those neighborhoods when the white flight began in the 1950s. In the last 15 years, deindustrialization, decentralized economies and the urge of young people to distance themselves from the values of their suburban parents have led to more urbanites with enormous purchasing power returning to downtown zip codes. An engrossing read on the subject can be found in the book: From The Edge Becomes the Center: An Oral History of Gentrification in the 21st Century by DW Gibson.

It seems important here to note that the food system’s “urban pioneers” of the 1970s do not reflect the term gentrifiers as they were interested in living among the existing population and did not have the economic power to submerge what was there previously. Those pioneers include many market leaders who were able to do good community work around food. To this day, I would argue that most markets continue to focus on what the present community wants in terms of market design, and have spurned developers displacement tactics. Still, markets can also be a victim of surrounding gentrification plans, especially if the municipality does not yet have a plan for equitable development that includes food. And many do not.
An example of how there may be no better example of how that right impulse can evolve into food seen as a gentrifier in and around San Francisco than this excerpt from Street Food by Adriana Camarena from March/April 2013:

“The Free Farm Stand was started by Dennis “Tree” Rubenstein. Tree was one of the founders of the Kaliflower Commune and the Free Food Conspiracy of 1968, in Haight-Ashbury. After the Haight became recognized as cool, the area quickly got too rich for conspiracies, and Tree and his Kaliflower communists were pushed out to Shotwell and 23rd. The Stand is now in the midst of the working poor of San Francisco’s Mission District, a testament to the idea that radical food politics will sprout where they are needed. Much of what we call food politics today—buying local, farming organic, eating vegetarian—originally came from collectives that wanted to raise awareness about industrially produced food. The People’s Food System of the mid-’70s was a network of community food stores and small-scale food collectives that organized to take back control of food from large agricultural and chemical companies; they built direct connections to farmers to establish the first farmers’ markets. Meanwhile, the Black Panthers were hosting free community breakfasts in their neighborhoods, and Alice Waters opened Chez Panisse partly as a space to talk about politics. Various collectives shared the urban farm known as the Crossroads Community (The Farm) on Potrero Avenue at the edge of the Mission…In recent years, urban farming has undergone a spirited revival in order to approach the issue of food security—the availability and accessibility of food—in its own way. There are five community gardens in the Mission, including one managed by the Free Food Stand, and seven more within walking distance. There are also edible gardens at schools, including Cesar Chavez Elementary School. Still, most community garden plots in the Mission are tended by middle-class urbanites, perhaps well-read in food politics, but mostly involved in community food security; and more and more, urban gardening takes place on private plots. So even as radical urban farming resurfaces, a critical piece of the radial community garden or urban farm—people coming together to work in collectives and cooperatives—is lost…”

(By the way, Alison Hope Alkon’s “Black, White, and Green; Farmers Markets, Race, and the Green Economy” also does an excellent job writing the history of 2 markets in the Northern California area:  one in Berkeley founded on environmental values and the other the Oakland market determined to address factors of economic apartheid under an authoritative police presence and continue the food organizing of Black Panthers, showing that markets can manage a very contextual organizing mission to serve their communities. )

As evinced in the Camarena excerpt, even though the SF organizers had not consciously intended to support the gentrification agenda, the growing number of users during the 1980s and 1990s were white urbanists with time and cash to spend. As gentrification grew, markets included younger, more affluent childless couples who did not take active roles in pushing for a broad range of services. The larger backdrop, of course, is that the U.S. has a tiered system of access in ALL sectors: housing, education, technology, healthcare and so on-industrial food has been no different.
(Added to that, the digital divide around the USDA’s 1990s move to an electronic card for benefits such as food stamps meant that the most at-risk neighbors could no longer use those benefits at their market. It took markets piloting the wireless technology once it arrived around 2004-5 and designing the token systems on their own to be included once again in the distribution of those dollars. Since then, the SNAP dollars spent at markets has surpassed the food stamp era and now is past the 20 million dollar a year mark.)

So, like other movements before it, community food has had to consciously address the social determinants that encourage or discourage inclusion by those without influence (read money). What is tricky about that, of course, is that the goal of the markets ARE money transactions as the producers cannot afford to give away their hard work and the cost of the travel continues to grow as farmland is gobbled up in expanding layers of gentrification. The delicate balance of creating wealth for the vendors can often feel as if it is in conflict with the needs of the at-risk population. One strategy has been the work to bring back’s partners the most at-risk residents through the incentive and voucher programs. Those programs have begun to add regular shoppers among those who previously were unsure or felt left out. Still, the number of programs and different currencies being used by funders are taxing both the market leaders and the vendors; let’s hope the technology gets to the point that it actually reduces the work needed to offer these programs rather than add to it as it does now.

Even with the incentive programs attracting more at-risk or lower-income shoppers,  it is easy for any organizer to grow impatient with those who do not immediately appreciate the programs offered and therefore for the market’s partner to have expectations of failure. The successful models devote time in study of the demographics of their market cities comparing those to shopper zip codes to continue to seek out the generations and neighbors who have not been made comfortable in these new markets. They do so without showing impatience or burning out our small businesses by constantly introducing new shoppers and not retaining enough of them as return shoppers.
They also realize the need for their market staff and vendors to reflect the community they serve. I have had some market board members or leaders telling me when asked if their market serves the entire community that they aren’t sure, or they recount how they have “tried to reach out to some of those neighbors but they just don’t want to come.” I do not doubt the willingness of the market community to include everyone, but the strategies can be tinged with assumptions that need to be challenged up front. Or to put it another way, to expect that the only way we will gain shoppers of people of color is through benefit or voucher programs is another assumption that we must challenge in ourselves.

Those assumptions are at the heart of the recent activism around the US:  the challenge among people of color to white allies to consider and rid themselves of their privilege. Whether it’s not having to be taught added steps of how to talk to police when stopped, or not having buzzers and locked doors on our corner stores or even not being a world-class African-American tennis player who has people post about her body shape in ugly, racist terms the day after she achieves a historic win, we do not know what we have not experienced until we ask and we listen. In order for us to understand the unearned advantage pale skin gives us, we need to examine our place in the world and our blanket statements or fears about those we do not resemble or live among. Challenging privilege does not mean that white organizers or farmers have to feel bad about themselves or their hard work, but that they need to look closely at how their community really operates for others who also work hard and cannot succeed.

One method used by markets has been to spend time in strategizing how to attract newly arrived or socially disadvantaged producers. Sometimes it is simple as having the application available in more than one language or having paper copies on hand and time for a chat with someone asking. Or through expanding the bylaws of the market to include cooperatives, foraged foods or a wider selection of culturally appropriate items. Sometimes it requires markets find partners to help those new to farming gain advanced knowledge of how to create a crop plan or how to price competitively. There are many examples of markets using these tactics successfully to increase diversity of users, both as vendors at first and then in shoppers.

We can help our own cause by remembering that we can choose the values and the community that our markets serve by how we design it or how we choose an inclusive mission or bylaws. This short chronological history below is something I attempt to add to whenever I work with markets and so am glad to hear from any of you on it. What it shows me is the intention of the work that has been done over the last 40 years and that when we expand to new ideas, we find the right message and partners to make it possible.  As always, this is somewhat off the top of my head so forgive any obvious omissions and feel free to email me directly with additions or corrections. (Exceptions to this timeline are to be found in every era; often those were led by a coalition of local voices who had their act together earlier than the rest of us.)

1970s-1980s: Back-to-land farmers and ecological advocates begin markets. Their organizing principle is “Grow it to sell it” which was a provocative statement at the time, asking for a commitment up front from both the growers and the buyers. These markets opened in places such as Madison WI, Carrboro NC, Athens OH, Berkeley CA, Montpelier VT-a lot of university towns actually.

1990s: Community leaders, aware of the first markets, begin to open markets in cities adding educational programming to the grow it to sell it mandate. Cities like San Francisco, Seattle, New Orleans, Portland, Cleveland, D.C. were the recipient of this work. Interestingly, many became the founders of larger networks, including Farmers Market Coalition. Social cohesion was an important value beginning in these years, because of these leaders.

1990s-2000s: Main Street markets in smaller towns and in rural communities began to add markets to their revival initiatives in towns like Ocean Springs MS, Natchitoches LA, Durham NC. These markets added value-added items and encouraged new non-farm vendors, focusing on incubating new businesses and supporting nearby Main Street initiatives.

2000s:  As technology advanced to allow at-risk populations to access markets with their EBT card, public health strategies became useful and the field of practioners and agencies in that field began to partner with and sponsor new markets to expand good food by getting markets in new places and adding public health incentives. This certainly includes Kaiser-Permanente’s work to add markets to their own hospital campuses and markets such as Crossroads Farmers Market in Takoma Park MD.

2000s: Deeply embedded organizers add food initiatives to their portfolio of activities, utilizing the community assets of residents. Markets in and around central Brooklyn NY like Brooklyn Rescue Mission, East New York Farm and Sankofa Market in New Orleans LA  create multi-faceted centers of organizing with embedded markets to offer residents the opportunity to be both the buyers and vendors.

So my (flawed and incomplete) history shows a deep attention to entrepreneurial activity, food sovereignty and to farmland reclamation, and that we are beginning to address how food organizing needs to happen at community/market level and across systems at the very same time.

Today, we are all more conscious about the implication of creating programs that offer the real opportunity for diversity in front of and behind the tables. I have great hope for this work to be part of the solution and to continue to assist in tearing down the structural elements that divide us.

Part 2

West Side Market adds another day… …and some disagreement

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As many of my readers know, I spent my early years in the west suburbs of Cleveland. Like many of us, I occasionally trucked over to the West Side Market to buy special items or to soak up the atmosphere-actually, maybe the right word is rarely.

Luckily for me, I moved to the nearby Tremont neighborhood while a poor community organizer in the 1980s and 1990s and had more access to the market. My friends and I used the market quite regularly, as without it gas stations and a very dirty grocery store many dangerous blocks from us were our available shopping outlets. As we became regulars, many of the WSM vendors shared their end of day produce with us at a lower price or even threw in some items with our purchase. Later on, my nephew worked there while a teenager with a pal of my sister’s and since he had to be at work in the pre-dawn hours on the weekends moving meat up and down the stairs, now knows what hard work looks and feels like.

So for those reasons I keep up on the news from this market so closely and why changes to it remain deeply personal to me. The changes that are being made, like paid parking and more days open, sound like they are to support the nearby businesses around the market more than those within the market- not that there is anything inherently wrong with that, just that it seems like the city is mostly responding to external pressures. I will say however, that for a public market to be closed on Sundays has always surprised me. I’d have preferred to see Mondays and Tuesdays as their dark days.

Achieving balance between the needs of the neighborhood and of the vendors and shoppers is the most important task and, as any market organizer knows, is a delicate dance. Some of the comments in these articles from the vendors are implying a purely political reason for this change, others are willing to believe this is a good marketing idea in a constantly changing retail environment while still others are intractable in not changing the tradition of Sunday hours and even believe that it will only dilute Saturdays sales. (That may very well be a valid point that I will of course answer with they should be collecting data on their shoppers to know and be able to answer that question.) Shoppers’ opinions tend to line up on more days are better, which is certainly understandable. The parking woes that exist currently for shoppers are likely a large reason for people staying away and so more days open may solve that issue temporarily, but probably not permanently.

I think what is missing in the announcements is the clear plan for this market and for these vendors by the management and advisors. Is the WSM becoming part of the cafe/entertainment culture that has grown up around it and therefore expected to primarily serve it? Or is the WSM part of the robust local food culture in Cleveland and meant to align itself with those values? Or do the operators see the WSM as an anchor for small business in and of itself?

As a traditional shed market, a primary purpose must be defined and acted upon in their decision-making process because unlike pop up (open-air) markets, it cannot move and/or redefine itself easily. It must constantly draw people to its bulk through changing times and offer enough regular return to those permanent stall vendors who have also invested in shared infrastructure.

How this change was handled in Cincinnati at the Findlay Market  a few years back seemed unfortunate and led to a very public argument that meant the market had some bad vibes around it for a little while, but indications show that the changes there may have helped their growth. However, it is important to recognize that the entire area around Findlay is seeing increased vibrancy with millennials and urbanists repopulating  OTR and downtown and so this success may have little to do with its added hours. I do think the management and supporters did some great work supporting that expansion.

Certainly, there it is difficult or even impossible to achieve full agreement for almost any decision made by a market organization, but collecting data and using it to redefine the market’s mission and understand its context historically, now and for the future will help make the right decision clearer.

And yes, I’ll shop on Sundays rather than Saturdays whenever I am back in Cleveland to leave my Saturdays for the direct marketing farmers markets around town.

http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2016/03/west_side_market_will_add_sund.html

http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2010/10/changes_considered_for_histori.html

FMPP 2015

After reading through the thumbnails on the USDA site a few times (and they are added at the end of this post), you’ll find some of my takeaways on this round of successful grants. I combed through this list a few times, and did my best to collect data correctly (!)  but do realize my numbers are not precise and may be off since I just took the data from the summaries listed.

USDA expected to fund around 190 with this round of funding and, by their count, ended up funding 163 projects.

47 states, districts and territories are represented.

California has the largest number of grants with 14 (one was listed with KS projects)

The majority of the proposals focus on simple marketing and outreach for markets. Here are the grants that specifically mention one of the following:

  • EBT/SNAP/benefit programs: 44

Farmer/vendor assistance/expansion

  • Farmer Training: 47 (“Peer-to-peer”: 2)
  • Agritourism: 15
  • GAP training: 5
  • Storage for farmers: 4
  • Food trucks: 1

Marketing outlets

  • Mobile Markets: 17
  • CSA/Market Box/Farm Stands: 20
  • Online purchasing system: 6
  • Mobile app: 3
  • Food Hubs: 2

Market upgrades

  • New market development: 16
  • Market relocation: 3
  • 501 (c) application: 2

Strategic planning

  • Analysis/data collection/measurement strategies: 13
  • Network development/support: 16 (New FM associations: 2)
  • Additional staffing: 7 (internship program development: 3)
  • Market manager certification program: 1

Marketing/Outreach

  • Bilingual materials: 7
  • Transportation to market: 3
  • Curriculum: 4
  • Cooking demos or classes: 29
  • Kids events: 10 (POP: 2)

Some other odds and ends of creativity to share that showed up at least once: inclement weather supplies for shoppers and vendors, SNAP advisory committee made up of SNAP recipients, a road show that will highlight regional farmers via traveling through region, DRIVE (Demo, Ride, Incentivize, Vary, Eat) and FORAGE (Food Oases’ Role to Advance and Generate Economies), door-to-door outreach, meal-kit CSAs, online discussions, a Latino ambassador program, expanding shoulder season products (early Spring and Fall),  a pre-purchase system that allows for the use of (SNAP) benefits, a financial analysis to review market budgets,  creating easy-to-use fillable templates for managers, direct mail campaign regarding artisan meats, a partnership with library to offer educational opportunities for vendors and consumers, culturally-appropriate public service announcements, TANF workforce assistance in production, WiFi addition, assessing agritourism readiness, a farm-to-work week, technical support for U.S. Veterans to become farm entrepreneurs, best practices of university farmers’ markets.

Some specific outcomes written into the description: fresh produce and healthy living cooking experiences to 100 neighborhoods, strategic community development action plans for each FMNP market county,  two new retail options (pop-up markets), three thriving, community-run farm stands, extending the farmers’ market to year-round, a financially self-sufficient farmers’ market, eight new points-of-sale, collaboration between fifteen Latino owned farm enterprises and five local farmers and three local food businesses.

wow. I wish everyone good luck in this round of funding and will look forward to reading the results.

Awards List, listed by state

Continue reading

2015 Farmers Market SNAP Support Grantees

Some very exciting projects in here. Congratulations to all of the successful organizations.

As approved by Congress in the President’s FY 2014 budget request for FNS (The Food and Nutrition Service: 2014, Explanatory Notes), these funds are intended to support “the participation of farmers’ markets in SNAP by providing equipment and support grants to new markets and those currently participating in the program.” The goals of the FMSSG program are to increase SNAP accessibility and participation at farmers’ markets, and support the establishment, expansion, and promotion of SNAP/Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) services at farmers’ markets. This is a new program, which may continue in subsequent years.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Link to original RFA

Last Published: 10/02/2015
  1. Plant Chicago, NFP – Ensuring SNAP Success at Plant Chicago’s Farmers Market
    Chicago, IL
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $15,379
    Plant Chicago’s Ensuring SNAP Success project, will improve SNAP programming in the urban center of Chicago, IL by increasing SNAP-customers at the organization’s farmers market through community, bi-lingual outreach and a local marketing campaign.  Through this project the SNAP program at the market will expand to include a volunteer program for weekdays and weekends.  Plant Chicago intends to increase SNAP participation at their market by over 25% for 2017.
  2. Trust for Conservation Innovation – Making Farmers Market Purchases a SNAP in Northern California
    San Francisco, CA
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $123,068
    The Making Farmers Market Purchases a SNAP in Northern California project will support staffing for the SNAP at eight small-scale farmers markets in Northern California that currently struggle to provide SNAP on a regular basis. Through this project, these markets will receive EBT technical training and assistance.  Additionally, the project will increase SNAP redemptions at farmers markets through community outreach and promotion and develop best practices to ensure growth and sustainability.
  3. Morgantown Farmers’ Market Growers Association – Expanding a Targeted SNAP Program to Demographically-Diverse Member Markets
    Morgantown, WV
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $36,599
    Through the FMSSG, the Morgantown Farmers’ Market Growers Association will hire an EBT coordinator to manage the growing SNAP at two farmers markets and increase redemptions by engaging in outreach specifically targeted to SNAP-participants in urban food-desert of West Virginia.  The Association will also identify best practices that can be incorporated into a long-term plan for the SNAP at other markets throughout West Virginia.
  4. Growing Places Indy, Inc. – Indy Winter Farmers Market (IWFM) “Good Eating Is a SNAP, All Winter Long”
    Indianapolis, IN
    Promise Zone
    Estimated Federal Funding: $58,740
    The Indy Winter Farmers Market (IWFM) “Good Eating Is a SNAP, All Winter Long” program will increase access to SNAP by hiring a dedicated EBT manager that will also coordinate educational demonstrations and outreach materials.  This staff member will provide farmer vendors with needed training and technical support. These activities will help to increase the consumption of farmers market products by SNAP customers and give farmers the tools they need to increase SNAP redemptions and build their businesses.
  5. Homefull – Growing SNAP Success with Southwest Ohio Farmers’ Markets
    Montgomery, OH
    Estimated Federal Funding: $113,258
    Through Growing SNAP Success with Southwest Ohio Farmers’ Markets, Homefull will reach a three-county area to bolster and increase SNAP at over fifteen local farmers markets and promote SNAP availability at the participating markets.  Homefull will achieve this through EBT training and technical assistance, outreach, EBT staffing, and market ambassadors.  The project plans to double the number and dollar value of SNAP transactions at southwest Ohio farmers markets.
  6. The Experimental Station-6100 Blackstone –  EBT Support and Outreach For Illinois Farmers Markets and SNAP Clientele
    Chicago, IL
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    Over a two-year project, the Experimental Station will provide EBT support to Illinois farmers markets accepting SNAP through EBT/SNAP consulting, technical support and establishing an online community of EBT support to Illinois farmers markets.  This project will also create and disseminate outreach materials and television advertisements, to create greater awareness of the availability of SNAP at Illinois farmers markets. The Experimental Station aims to double SNAP sales at markets throughout Illinois during the life of this project.
  7. Houston Department of Health and Human Services – Expanding Opportunity for Use of SNAP at Houston Farmers Markets
    Houston, TX
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    The Houston Department of Health and Human Services through the Expanding Opportunity for Use of SNAP at Houston Farmers’ Markets project will provide staff and EBT technical support and promotional activities related to the expansion of SNAP acceptance at Houston farmers markets.  Outreach and promotional activities will be implemented in partnership with local community organizations to increase the number of farmers markets accepting SNAP to six.  The project aims to increase the number of SNAP transactions at farmers markets within the City of Houston to 8,980 by 2018.
  8. Missouri Farmers Market Association – Growing SNAP at Farmers Markets in Missouri
    Webb City, Missouri
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $73,160
    The Missouri Farmers Market Association will expand the SNAP at ten farmers markets throughout Missouri. SNAP-expansion will occur through a variety of marketing tools tailored to the individual market and its SNAP-customers.  The marketing tools range from radio advertising to cooking demonstrations, to banners, and brochures, all designed to best reach local SNAP-participants.
  9. Hamakua Harvest, Inc. – Hamakua Harvest Farmers’ Market SNAP/EBT Expansion Program
    Honokaa, HI
    Estimated Federal Funding: $137,174
    The Hamakua Harvest Farmers’ Market SNAP/EBT Expansion Program will support the newly-authorized farmers market in Honokaa, HI gain the support it needs to thrive. The funds will be used to promote and expand the SNAP through staffing an EBT manager, purchasing SNAP supplies, training for EBT market vendors, and outreach to SNAP-recipients.  Hamakua Harvest anticipates the impact of the project to include 36 vendors to be trained to accept SNAP.
  10. North Union Farmers Market – Increasing SNAP Benefit Use at North Union’s Cleveland Markets through Educational Outreach and Targeted Marketing
    Cleveland, OH
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $59,302
    North Union Farmers Market will strengthen their SNAP by hiring a part-time educational coordinator who will be responsible for expanding the market’s outreach programs and build relationships with community partners that work with SNAP-clients. The expanded outreach programs will include cooking demonstrations, family-friendly educational activities and workshops on food preservation.  The North Union Farmers Market will also implement a marketing program using print and digital media and radio advertisements.  The anticipated impact of the project is an increase in redemptions by 10%.
  11. Broad Street Events, INC. – Spotlight on Snap, Raising SNAP Awareness in Rural Michigan
    Chesaning, Michigan
    Estimated Federal Funding: $17,480
    The project Spotlight on SNAP will effectively market the SNAP to surrounding SNAP-residents and increase the amount of SNAP users at the Downtown Chesaning Market.  Funding will provide the needs to expand outreach and effectively promote SNAP through market activities, newspaper articles, television commercials, and outreach events.  Broad Street Events will partners with many local organizations and schools with high populations of SNAP-recipients.
  12. Village of Park Forest – Park Forest Farmers’ Market EBT Program
    Park Forest, IL
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $16,975
    The Park Forest Farmers’ Market EBT Program will increase SNAP benefit redemption at the Park Forest Farmers Market by hiring an EBT manager who will administer the program, plan and implement outreach strategies for informing SNAP participants of their ability to use benefits at the farmers market, and conduct trainings for farmer-producers new to the market on participation in the EBT program.  By expanding the EBT program, the market can continue to involve more vendors and offer greater varieties of products available to SNAP customers.
  13. Harvest Home Farmer’s Market – Farm Fresh for Every Body
    New York, NY
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    Through 19 different farmers markets in food-deserts around New York, Harvest Home will increase the number of SNAP transactions processed at their farmers markets, increase the number of farmers and vendors who serve SNAP recipients, and broaden their reach into the surrounding communities. Harvest Hands will achieve these goals by creating culturally and linguistically appropriate promotional materials to reach SNAP-recipients, improve the technology needed to process SNAP transactions on-site and in real time, and conduct ongoing vendor SNAP recruitment for farmer producers.
  14. Everyone’s Harvest – Monterey County SNAP Initiative
    Marina, CA
    Estimated Federal Funding: $109,716
    Everyone’s Harvest will double its annual SNAP redemptions and grow its SNAP customer base by 70% by using a customer relationship management database and outreach to SNAP market shoppers.  The organization will achieve this by engaging Spanish-speaking community members in producing a Spanish-language promotional video focused on SNAP and creating a mailing and email outreach campaign.
  15. Eastern Market Corporation – Eastern Market: Detroit’s SNAP Food Security Blanket
    Detroit, MI
    Strong Cities Strong Communities
    Estimated Federal Funding: $249,663
    The Eastern Market: Detroit’s SNAP Food Security Blanket program will provide resources for program support staff, consulting fees, and supplies to allow for significant program improvements through increased operational efficiencies and greater program effectiveness.  This will be achieved by discontinuing the use of a paper-based system and expanding the SNAP program to an additional market.
  16. Friends of the Rochester Public Market, Inc. – Greater Rochester Farmers’ Market SNAP Collaborative
    Rochester, NY
    Estimated Federal Funding: $178,902
    Through the Greater Rochester Farmers’ Market SNAP Collaborative project the Friends of the Rochester Public Market will implement a community-wide marketing campaign that increases awareness of SNAP use at regional farmers markets.  Additionally funds will be used to develop a new SNAP Token Center at the Public Market and staff salaries for SNAP related activities
  17. Fresh Approach – SNAP Training and Outreach for Farmers’ Markets in San Francisco Bay Area Counties
    Concord, CA
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $190,951
    Fresh Approach will use funds to perform SNAP data collection, build a network of farmers market stakeholders, create and distribute bi-lingual marketing material, produce outreach events, create a best practices manual for farmers markets to utilize setting up a SNAP program, and train farmers market staff on SNAP program implementation.
  18. Glenville State College Research Corporation – Expansion of Acceptance of SNAP at the Gilmer County Farmers’ Market: Population of low income households in a food desert
    Glenville, WV
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $42,020
    This project will use funds to design and distribute educational posters and handouts, create and execute an extensive marketing campaign including TV and radio ads, provide salary for an EBT operator and manager, and train volunteers and market staff on SNAP procedures.
  19. Southern Tier West Regional Planning and Development Board – From the Ground Up: Expand and Sustain SNAP at Farmers Markets
    Salamanca, NY
    Estimated Federal Funding: $99,813
    From the Ground Up: Expand and Sustain SNAP at Farmers Markets project will provide research and data analysis, technical assistance, educational training, volunteer training, and capacity building strategies to farmers market managers, and perform outreach to SNAP clients, develop curriculum and training materials for the Southern Tier West Regional Farmers Market Network.
  20. City of Independence – Increasing SNAP Awareness and Utilization at Independence Farmers’ and Craft Market
    Independence, MO
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $144,976|
    The City of Independence will use FMSSG funds to design and implement a marketing plan for the Independence Farmers market through movie, billboard, local print and bus advertisements, additionally banners and other printed advertising material will be used at the farmers market and distributed throughout the community.  City staff will also perform outreach and educational events in order to increase redemptions at the farmers market due to higher community awareness of SNAP at the farmers market.
  21. Florida Certified Organic Growers and Consumers, Inc. –  Increasing the Capacity of Fresh Access Bucks in Florida
    Gainesville, FL
    FINI & Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    The Increasing the Capacity of Fresh Access Bucks in Florida project will use FMSSG funds to pay personnel for SNAP administration, organization to provide resources, and technical assistance to farmers market managers.  The project will also develop strategic branding and promotional materials for FL farmers markets and promote SNAP at markets through regular press releases, advertising on the radio, in newspapers, on public transit, on electric bills in each county, direct mailings, and through social media.
  22. Boulder County Public Health – Building and Growing Regional Capacity for SNAP at Farmers’ Markets in Colorado’s Front Range
    Boulder, CO
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $231,460
    The Boulder County Public Health will use funds to staff a farmers market SNAP coordinator, conduct focus groups on the barriers to accessing farmers markets, develop and implement an outreach plan, train farmers and market managers on managing a SNAP program, hire bi-lingual staff for markets, and create communication tools to distribute best practices to farmers markets in the county.
  23. Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project – Increasing SNAP at NC Farmers Markets
    Asheville, NC
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $164,625
    Through the Increasing SNAP at NC Farmers Markets project, the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project will conduct outreach and promotion to and collaboration with local agencies on SNAP at farmers markets, conduct trainings for market managers and farmers on how to increase SNAP redemptions at markets, evaluate community needs through research and surveys, and provide technical assistance to market managers following their initial training.
  24. The Food Trust – Making Fresh Food a SNAP: Increasing ACCESS Sales at Food Trust Farmers’ Markets
    Philadelphia, PA
    Promise Zone, FINI, Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $150,103
    The Food Trust will conduct focus groups, staff EBT operation at markets, implement promotional events around SNAP, develop marketing plan to educate SNAP-clients on EBT at farmers markets, develop bi-lingual marketing and educational materials, train market managers on SNAP program management, and collaborate with local partners.
  25. Hub City Farmers’ Market – Expanding South Carolina’s SNAP Use at Farmers Markets
    Spartanburg, SC
    Strike Force State
    Federal Funding: $247,100
    This project seeks to create a market model that can serve as an inspiration to markets across the state, alleviate market and user barriers, and help municipalities understand the importance of supporting SNAP in markets they run. Hub City Farmers’ Market of Spartanburg will work with Eat Smart Move More South Carolina and the University of South Carolina Center for Research in Nutrition and Health Disparities to develop a set of best practices to help mentor two markets in key areas of the State.
  26. El Dorado County Trails Farm Association – Improvement and Expansion of EDC Farm Trails Association Farmers’ Market SNAP Program
    Placerville, CA
    Federal Funding: $16,057
    The project’s main goal is to boost public awareness of farmers’ market accepting SNAP benefits.  Applicant plans to partner with the Health and Human Services Department and El Dorado CNAP to conduct outreach along with media blitz and raise awareness about the program.
  27. Feed the Hunger Foundation – SNAP at Honolulu Farmers Market
    San Francisco, CA/Honolulu, HI
    Federal Funding: $243,450
    The plan for this project includes outreach to the following communities: 1) news outlets engaging communities whose first language is not English: Samoan, Tongan, Chuukese, Tagalog, Ilocano, Korean, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Thai, Lao, Cambodian, Japanese; 2) Military news at Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam; 3) University of Hawaii system (including community and adult education outreach colleges). 4) Coordinating with other SNAP –accessible farmers markets to collaborate on promotion.
  28. Ecology Center – California Farmers’ Market EBT Program
    Alameda, CA
    Strong Cities, Strong Communities (SC2)
    Federal Funding: $242,828
    The project’s aims to support the Ecology Center’s CA Farmers Market EBT program and will: (1) reach out to the 350 CA farmers’ markets that do not yet offer SNAP access with a compelling Case Statement on the benefits of accepting SNAP; (2) provide comprehensive technical assistance, training, shopper outreach materials, scrip, and systems to help a minimum of 120 of those markets add SNAP access; (3) update, improve, and maintain FMfinder.org, the Ecology Center’s website and mobile site designed to helps SNAP shoppers easily find up-to-the-minute information on CA farmers’ markets where they can use their benefits; (4) work with the Departments of Social Services in Los Angeles and Alameda Counties to mail over 1.3M inserts to 632,205 SNAP in order to educate them about the availability of SNAP programs at local farmers’ markets and direct the shoppers to FMfinder.org to find locations and hours of operation; and (5) through these combined efforts, increase SNAP sales at CA Farmers’ Markets by $1.23M (a 33% increase over 2014) by the end of the grant term.
  29. Kokomo Farmers Market Corp – SNAP To Kokomo Farmers’ Market: a targeted marketing, outreach and expansion project to increase SNAP user participation and benefits use at the KDFM
    Kokomo, IN
    Federal Funding: $248,770
    The project goals are to (1) increase SNAP client accessibility and participation at the Kokomo Downtown Farmers Market (KDFM) through extended hours, targeted outreach and expanded marketing, to (2) improve systems for SNAP transactions, recording, and reporting, and to (3) support SNAP recipients with cooking and preserving demonstrations at various outreach locations.
  30. Sustainable Farms & Communities, Inc. – Expanding SNAP Participation in Boone County, Missouri
    Columbia, MO
    Estimated Federal Funding:  $146,983
    Expanding SNAP Participation in Boone County, Missouri project will provide staff for EBT market management, including record keeping, token management and educational activities.  Also, the project will develop a comprehensive marketing and community outreach plan, and healthy cooking and living demonstrations.
  31. Health Education Council – Sacramento Region CalFresh Market Expansion: Connecting Families to Farmers
    West Sacramento, CA
    Promise Zone & Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $240,429
    This project will provide technical training and support to SNAP market managers, the funds will also provide EBT staffing for markets, outreach to SNAP customers at markets, marketing material, and regional meetings and trainings.
  32. Washington State University – Skagit Farmers Market Flash
    Pullman, WA
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    Washington State University will implement the Skagit Farmers Market Flash project through organizing and producing market outreach events, increase access to farmers markets for seniors, develop and roll-out a marketing campaign, and provide EBT training and technical assistance for farmers market managers.
  33. Federation of Massachusetts Farmers Markets – Massachusetts SNAP Support Project
    Waltham, MA
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    Massachusetts SNAP Support Project will provide SNAP operating support to farmers market managers across Massachusetts; awarding sub-grants for time spent operating SNAP/EBT machines at market, SNAP accounting, vendor payments, reporting, and performing outreach to SNAP participants, as well as purchasing scrip and accounting software necessary for SNAP/EBT.
  34. Dianne’s Call – Optimizing Peoples’ Everyday Nutritional (OPEN) Path to Healthier Lifestyles
    Sumter, SC
    Strike Force State & Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $229,589
    Dianne’s call with expand the SNAP program at local farmers markets through training, conducting hands-on cooking classes, provide educational material for SNAP at farmers markets and implement health and behavior promotional events.
  35. Downtown Fond du Lac Partnership, Inc. – Reaching Diverse Populations through SNAP at the Farmers Market
    Fond du Lac, WI
    Estimated Federal Funding: $28,471
    This project will provide market managers and farmer EBT trainings, SNAP community outreach, extensive marketing campaign to SNAP-clients, creation of promotional videos, language translation for marketing materials, market and SNAP tours for clients, educational and cooking demonstrations, and additional SNAP signage.
  36. Village of Farwell – Farwell Farmer’s Market SNAP Project|
    Farwell, MI
    Estimated Federal Funding: $89,160
    The Farwell Farmer’s Market SNAP Project will provide staff for the farmers market, train vendors on EBT use, create marketing materials, implement marketing plan, and a social media campaign.
  37. Maine Federation of Farmers’ Markets – Building a SNAP Support System for Maine Farmers’ Markets
    Pittsfield, ME
    Estimated Federal Funding: $249,677
    The Main Federation of Farmers’ Markets will use funds to provide training for market managers and farmers on EBT, provide support and technical assistance for local farmers markets, produce and utilize SNAP-Farmers Market communication tools, update EBT training manual, implement a branding campaign in conjunction with FINI, and develop and train market liaisons.
  38. Sankofa Safe Child Initiative – Sankofa Seniors Farmer’s Market Project
    Chicago, IL
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $28,616
    The Sankofa Seniors Farmer’s Market Project will use funds to do community outreach, cooking demonstrations and other educational sessions targeted toward seniors, and increase access to farmers market for seniors.
  39. Farm Fresh Rhode Island – The Rhode Island Farmers Market SNAP Network
    Pawtucket, RI
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    Farm Fresh Rhode Island will develop and implement extensive marketing plan focusing on SNAP at farmers markets and provide financial support to local farmers markets to maintain their EBT programs.
  40. Billings Forge Community Works, Inc. – More SNAP: Local Vegetables and Fruit for Hartford Tables
    Hartford, CT
    Promise Zone
    Estimated Federal Funding: $198,776
    The More SNAP: Local Vegetables and Fruit for Hartford Tables project will involve rolling-out promotional plan for SNAP at farmers markets, which includes various advertisements, produce a farmers market toolkit, and train market managers and farmers on EBT.
  41. CEN-TEX Certified Development Corporation – Supporting SNAP redemption at Mercado O’liva Farmer’s Markets in San Antonio
    Austin, TX
    Strike Force State, Promise Zone & Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $88,662
    This project will provide EBT staffing and administration for the Mercado O’liva Farmers Markets. Additionally the project will implement social media promotion and an advertisement campaign consisting of print, radio and TV and CEN-TEX will hold cooking demonstrations targeted to SNAP-clients at markets.
  42. Ajo Center for Sustainable Agriculture – Good Food For All – Introducing SNAP at Authentically Ajo Farmers Market
    Ajo, AZ
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $223,530
    The Good Food for All project will expand and support the SNAP/EBT program at the Ajo Farmers Market, design and implement standard practices, provide training on EBT for market vendors and volunteers meeting the needs of SNAP-clients in a poor rural area.
  43. Council on the Environment, Inc. (GrowNYC) – Branding and Advertising to Boost SNAP Sales at Greenmarket
    New York, NY
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $186,335
    GrowNYC will create a branding and advertising campaign that promotes SNAP acceptance at Greenmarkets throughout the city and purchase marketing materials, such as banners, flyers, canopies, etc., based on the campaign.
  44. The Gleaning Network of Texas (GROW North Texas) – Expanding SNAP at Farmers Markets in Dallas
    Dallas, TX
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $230,230
    The Gleaning Network of Texas will use FMSSG funds to hire market staff for four seasonal markets to run SNAP programs, provide technical EBT assistance to farmers, purchase SNAP tokens, and implement and outreach plan.
  45. Corporation for Findlay Market – Get Fresh With Us
    Cincinnati, OH
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $37,932
    Get Fresh With Us will use funds to train interns to help manage EBT operations at farmers markets, provide community outreach for SNAP at farmers markets, give market tours for SNAP-clients, develop and distribute SNAP outreach materials, and hold cooking demonstrations at markets in the area.
  46. Gloria Tu Gilbert – Westford Farmers Market SNAP 2015-2017: Sustainable Incentive
    Westford, MA
    Estimated Federal Funding: $27,709
    The Westford Farmers Market Project will provide staff for operating the SNAP program at the farmers market, training for EBT staff, and marketing SNAP at the farmers market and throughout the community, and supplies needed to operate a SNAP program.
  47. Main Street Monroe, Inc. – Enhancement of SNAP Accessibility and Participation at Main Street Monroe Farmers Market
    Monroe, WI
    Estimated Federal Funding: $179,051
    This project will collaborate with community partners to implement community outreach promoting SNAP acceptance at the Main Street Monroe Farmers Market, develop a transportation plan to distribute to SNAP-clients helping them overcome transportation barriers, establish procedures for operating EBT at the market, and provide training to vendors to operate EBT.
  48. Sustainable Food Center – Central Texas Farmers’ Market SNAP Expansion
    Austin, TX
    Strike Force State & Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $147,210
    This project will hire staff for running EBT at markets, develop a Neighborhood Farm Market Startup Guide and training materials, train market managers and vendors on EBT management, provide technical assistance to farmers markets, and provide community outreach.
  49. Fuller Park Community Development Corporation – Eden Place Farmers’ Markets SNAP Outreach
    Chicago, IL
    Choice Neighborhood
    Estimated Federal Funding: $111,418
    The Eden’s Place Project will develop outreach and marketing materials, targeted outreach to seniors on SNAP, on-site educational demonstrations at the market, host informational and training workshops on managing EBT at markets, and provide technical assistance to market managers and farmers on EBT.
  50. Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT) – Growing EBT Access and Capacity at Vermont’s Farmers Markets
    Richmond, VT
    Estimated Federal Funding: $247,048
    This project will implement a marketing campaign using direct mailings, financial and technical support for area farmers markets, provide outreach and education to community partners on SNAP acceptance at farmers markets, and provide supplies to markets for successful EBT programs.
  51. The CSU, Chico Research Foundation – Increased EBT Participation in North Valley Farmers’ Markets
    Chico, CA
    Estimated Federal Funding: $250,000
    The Chico Research Foundation will use funds to develop and implement a SNAP outreach and marketing campaign, purchase SNAP signage and other supplies, farmers market staff will be trained on SNAP operations and program strategies, host market tours to promote EBT use at the market, and cooking demonstrations will be held to encourage eating more fruits and vegetables.
  52. North Carolina State University – More In My Basket at the Market
    Wake, NC
    Strike Force State
    Estimated Federal Funding: $248,530
    This project will provide outreach and information to community SNAP-clients, marketing materials published and distributed to SNAP-clients, provide market tours to SNAP-recipients, and cooking demonstrations.