Promoting Wholesale Markets

Introduction

Farming for local markets often consists of selling directly to the consumer through farm stands, pick-your-own operations, farmer's markets, and CSAs. However, opportunities to sell to wholesale distributors or to institutions, such as schools and hospitals, can help diversify farm income.

Institutions

Schools

Farm to school programs provide new markets for local farmers, provide nutritious food to schoolchildren, and often improve childrens' awareness of the agricultural sector.

Fortunately, USDA's Alternative Farming Systems Information Center (AFSIC) has developed an online bibliography of Farm to School resources.

  • Provides resources based on region and type of school
  • Contains how-to resource guides as well as sections devoted to farm to school policy.

Organizations

FamilyFarmed.org's Market Development

  • helps build supply and demand for local food
  • assists in development of infrastructure that supports the growth of the system
  • works with buyers of local food including Whole Foods Market, Chipotle, Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, Sysco, Compass Group, Goodness Greeness, Chartwells-Thompson Hospitality (Chicago Public Schools), Irv & Shelley's Fresh Picks, Testa Produce, and others