Randii MacNear and Shelly G. Keller have prepared and Davis Farmers Market Association, have published a new online resource for New and Beginning Farmers selling at Farmers Markets in 2012. New Farmers Guide: Cultivating Success at Farmers Markets.

This is a great introduction to New and Begining Farmers/Ranchers interested in exploring the potential of Farmers Markets. And for the experienced Farmers Markets Participants – it provides some real handy tips on how to make improvements and increase sales and customer satisfaction.

“Davis Farmers Market partnered with UC Davis Sustainable Agriculture, Research and Education Program to research, market and open a farmers market at the entrance to Sutter Davis Hospital. The grant also funded work to implement institutional changes in how the hospital purchases food and promotes local food and farmers to hospital staff and patients. That grant included a training component for new farmers and this guide reveals the information, experience and knowledge Davis Farmers Market staff gained while opening and managing the Sutter Davis Hospital Farmers Market. What we learned about emerging farmers markets is this: new small farmers are key to building new farmers markets. Cultivating those new farmers in small or emerging farmers markets can help those farmers advance to larger, more successful markets. Emerging farmers markets are the training ground and the proving ground for new farmers market sellers.”

Here is the Table of contents:

Introduction 1
About the authors 2
Why farmers markets are good for farmers 4
Traits of successful farmers market sellers 5
Readiness: Is selling at a farmers market right for you? 6
Preparing to sell at farmers markets 7
Pricing and pricing strategies 8
Setting goals 9
Researching prospective markets 10
Getting your documents together 11
Estimating your costs 12
Building relationships with market managers 12
Pitching your farm to a market manager 13
Follow-through builds trust 13
Your farmers market retail stand 14
Displaying your products 14
Creating signs that help you sell 15
Dressing for sales success 15
Staffing your farmers market stand 16
Welcoming customers 16
Offering samples 17
Creating effective customer handouts 17
Expanding your marketing 18
Staying in touch with market managers 20
Tracking and evaluating results 21
Bibliography 22
Readiness checklist 23
Farmers market visit evaluation form 24
Budgeting farmers market costs 26
Farmers market advice from Davis Farmers Market sellers 27