Blog entries by Tom Roberts

About Tom Roberts

When I started attending the Brewer Farmers’ Market back in August of 1983, my sole concern was being able to sell the produce my farm was growing at a good price. After attending market for a year or two, I began to realize that how the market was organized had a great impact on my sales. And how the market was organized also influenced how it made decisions about dues, new members, what could be sold at market, and how it promoted itself—and this, too, had an impact on my sales. So I got involved in the market’s steering committee and began to understand how various market members thought the market should operate. Some wanted a market czar, some wanted everyone to be allowed to do their own thing. But everyone seemed to agree that if the market as a whole did well, then so did they.

To peddle or not to peddle

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by Tom Roberts (from 1990’s Selling Outdoors) Whether to allow market members to buy some or all of what they sell could be a hotly debated subject or an easy consensus. Which occurs at your market depends upon your market’s history and its current makeup, as well as on your members’ vision of what your […]

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Buying in for resale

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(article from 1990’s Selling Outdoors) There are few questions which bring more division among market ranks than whether to allow buying for re-selling, and if so under what terms. The state law, of course, says a seller at a farmers’ market must have at least 75% of their items grown by them, and 100% of […]

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Filling market voids

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(article from 1990’s Selling Outdoors) Does your market have voids? This is another way of asking if there are times during the year when an item is in season, but no one at your market is offering it. Some markets, especially new ones, often don’t recognize that “market voids” or “supply gaps” are one of […]

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