Self-administered survey-New Orleans Market Match user

This is (basically) the same system that Crescent City Farmers Market (CCFM) in New Orleans has used to gather data from incentive users (incentiv-ers?) since they began doing them some years back. They call their incentive Market Match.

As one of the staff who was responsible for doing it when it began and was part of the discussion about it, I really liked it. It is on a pad that is pulled off to have the person fill out and then each slip is added to the clipboard (or put in a container) to be entered into spreadsheets at a later time. The darker grey is filled out by the market staff person after the other part is completed by the shopper. What I know is that the system was designed with both the shopper and the market staff needs in minds, which as we all know is important and yet not always done. I’d like them to be numbered chronologically so as to know that none were lost. Maybe they are numbered, I’ll check to see.

Sorry for the wrinkles- it ended up in my market bag under the citrus. I’ll get some more pics of their system-including a better version of this and maybe the other collection forms if they will allow me to continue to peek over their shoulder.

MMtracking form_CCFM


Booth Tracker

Once again, going back to the flea market world, I noticed this software offer for flea market organizers. I wonder if the flea market world has some ideas about rent and mapping systems we in the farmers market field need to study?

School Scavenger Hunt/Incentive Project underway in New Orleans

This is one of our newest projects and builds on the last few years of our Meet Me at the Market (MM@TM) work. I wanted to share the early days of the project, although we are not ready to talk about measurable outcomes-since it’s only the first full week-and our market staff is running everywhere (not walking) these days to accomplish their to-dos on their calendar!

The Meet Me at the Market has been’s project for the last 4 years in which we travel to schools and community centers, do some activity with the attendees and then invite the organizers to visit on a selected day where we have a tent set up and a staff or volunteer person ready to assist the group. The purpose of the MM@TM (and targeted incentives) is we believe that once we build the relationship with the shoppers that goes beyond a passive chance visit to the market, we make long-term market community members, especially when there are barriers such as transportation issues, lack of knowledge about how to use open-air markets, or past purchase barriers (food stamps as an example) to overcome. The more barriers, the stronger the incentives.
Therefore we work to find ways to get our groups back as soon as possible, as often as possible. This has been an excellent way to introduce our Senior FMNP incentive; that incentive is where we offer a matching 24 dollars after they complete their FMNP booklet (to spend on other non-FMNP foods.) Those seniors stretch out the tokens as they did the coupons, coming in cooler months with family members to buy dairy or seafood with their tokens. Of course, they also know our market staff and interact with them more often throughout the year which builds trust and more knowledge transfer.

It has been harder to find some measurable outcome from the schools that have visited in the past years, as not all are using the market to teach the same lesson. So for 2011, we came up with a project we hope will do that and introduce more food-vulnerable children to the benefits of the market community.
This project has targeted a handful of schools that have a 50% +1 free and reduced meal enrollment, and are in zip codes near to one of our markets. The staff goes to the school, does a quick pre-Market visit tutorial in the classroom. This is where we measure their local food knowledge with our Bean Survey tool. Soon after, they attend the Market with their school in order to a) observe and participate in commercial and social transactions, b) attend a cooking and tasting lesson, and c) bring home from the Market sample specialty crops and an invitation to join the Market’s summer Marketeer events. The Marketeer events are held on Saturdays; kids of every background receive a postcard in the mail in the month of their birthday, which they can bring to the market to get a 5.00 token to spend and also come on the first Saturday of every month for a Marketeer event. The goodie bag the 2011 schoolkids will receive in their initial visit also contains an incentive for the parent to receive tokens when they come with their child to the Marketeer event.
We can measure the success in a number of ways:
1. The change in their knowledge from the Bean Survey (questions like have you ever met a farmer? have you ever tasted a Louisiana strawberry?) to after their market visit.
2. The number of bags we hand out with a pint of strawberries and the information.
3. The number that join our Marketeers club.
4. The number of parental incentives used.

This is a Department of Agriculture and Forestry grant through their Specialty Crop Grants; we are lucky to have such great partners that are interested in using their department to add knowledge about Louisiana specialty crops to the next generation of shoppers.
These are early days for this project so very little as far as outcomes can be shared yet. I will be updating its success here and am happy to talk via email (please direct questions to me so our market staff do not have more work from my sharing!)

How exciting to share my colleagues excellent work.

You “can” win

*Discover You Can Summer Canning Education Program *


*We are excited to introduce *Discover You Can, a summer canning
education program developed to assist Farmers Market Coalition member
organizations in achieving their education mission. The program is sponsored
by Jarden Home Brands, makers of Ball® Brand Fresh Preserving Products.
Discover You Can**SM** *is offering 50 FMC member farmers market
organizations the opportunity to apply for $1,200 in funding. The funding
is to be used to support local efforts to educate communities on the
benefits and simple ‘how tos’ of canning. In addition to funding, the
selected 50 organizations will also receive a starter kit, signage, coupons,
samples, and more from Jarden.

The Food Channel recently named home canning as the #1 food trend. This
program will allow you to host canning demonstrations—a topic relevant and
of interest to consumers. It will bring value to your community as they
learn the benefits of canning and buying fresh, local produce.

If you are interested in participating in this program, *click
here<a href="”>
* to complete the application and read the full list of Frequently Asked
Questions. Once completed, please return the application to ** or fax to (312) 664-5454. If you have
questions about this program, please contact Amber Meairs at 312-242-4723.

Jarden Home Brands is accepting applications until Friday April 29, 2011.
Select farmers markets will be announced the week of May 2, 2011 and welcome
kits will be mailed immediately thereafter.

Don’t miss out on this great opportunity. If you’re not currently an FMC
member, you can join
todayto be
eligible for Discover You Can Apply now!

A wild underground market

The forageSF folks are receiving some coverage about their underground market in the New York Times and in other publications. Their mission is about reconnecting the urban SF dweller to their wild foods and the market seems to have grown out of the need to have a place to encourage more knowledge, more new items AND because they could not get in to markets because of the rules about “grow it to sell it”. I wonder, how many markets around the country would have flatly said no to these foragers?
As some of you know, I am fascinated by the relationship between CSAs and public markets, and have noticed that many CSAs end up operating as a type of market, and I am always curious if the opposite is true too. This one seems to be moving more in the direction of the market being more useful for their work as it evolves.

What’s interesting about this is the idea is they seem to rate new vendors highest (based on the quotes in the story.) So, the usual criteria of favoring return vendors is much less useful to them, which tells me they have a very good sense of their 4Ms (mission, management, marketing and measurement).
On top of that, they have a free membership that you need to sign up for to get into the market, as you need to check off their hold harmless as a shopper so it really seems like the are dotting their is and crossing their ts…

So I wonder if this is a new typology of market (in’s spectrum of market analysis we are collecting with the Market Portraits).

They are definitely an organization to watch.