• Workshop aims to improve farmers’ marketing skills
     | December 30,2013

    When trying to make a living as a farmer, growing great food is only half the battle Ė even the best tomato or cheese doesnít sell itself.

    The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermontís ninth annual Direct Marketing Conference aims to improve farmersí sales by bringing together farmers, farmersí market organizers, and marketing pros to educate and build stronger opportunities within the thriving market for local food in Vermont.

    This daylong conference of workshops, inspiring speakers, and networking will be held Sunday, Jan. 12, at the Vermont Law School in South Royalton.

    The 2014 conference features two tracks: one for farmers who market directly to consumers through farmersí markets, farm stands, and community supported agriculture farms; and new track for farmersí market organizers.

    The main conference will feature 16 workshops on a variety of marketing and market development topics.

    The farmersí market organizer track includes intensive working sessions, including Governance Basics for Farmersí Markets; Marketing Tools, Best Practices & Guidelines for Better Organizing & Promoting Farmersí Markets; and Making the Case for Your Market in Your Community.

    The conference will also host the annual meeting of the Vermont Farmersí Market Association and coaching sessions for new farmers and online marketing.

    Conference attendees will enjoy listening to Richard Berkfield of Food Connects, Mari Omland of Green Mountain Girls Farm, and Eric Rozendaal of Rockville Market Farm as this yearís FarmsTED speakers. Darlene Wolnik, an independent consultant and farmersí market researcher, will act as moderator.

    For more information and to pre-register, visit www.nofavt.org/dmc. Walk-in registrations will be also welcome, but lunch may not be available.

    Each Vermont Farmersí Market Assocation member market is invited to send one representative to the conference, free of charge, who is able to attend and vote at the annual meeting held at the conference.

    Registration fees are $40 for NOFA Vermont members and $50 for non-members. A lunch made with local ingredients and refreshments is included with the conference fee.

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