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An informative discussion of the current state of farmers markets in America with Floridian Sharon Yeago, President of the Farmers Market Coalition.
We highlighted the new Florida Cottage Industry Food Act, SNAP & EBT Access at Markets, Tips for Market Success, Fresh From Florida, Florida Market Maker and the benefits of Farmers Markets outlined below. Also mentioned was the Audubon Park Community Market and the newly forming Mills 50 Community Market.
Seven Ways to Celebrate Farmers Market Impacts
- Farmers markets and community education: Innovative partnerships that allow markets to serve as hubs of information
- Farmers markets and public health : Promoting good nutrition and healthful habits
- Farmers markets as economic engines: Business incubation, job development, and local spending
- Farmers at the center of the system: Governance and policies that put farmers first
- Farmers markets and food equity: Improving access to healthful foods in underserved neighborhoods
- Farmers markets and civic engagement: Growing social capital and engaging volunteers
- Farmers markets and rural renewal: Supporting agricultural diversity and farm viability, while inspiring a new generation of producers
Sharon Yeago is the President of the Farmers Market Coalition and has been involved with small farmers for the past ten years. She is a past Chairman of the Board for the Florida Association of Community Farmers Markets and developed Buy Local Florida, one of the first programs supported by the USDA’s Farmers Market Promotion Program. Sharon developed this program that has increased the number of community farmers markets in Florida by 30% through mentoring, creating new markets, and educating market managers on working with small farmers, value added products, and best management practices.
Sharon has been a community farmers market manager for the past nine years and recently retired as the manager of the High Springs (FL) Farmers Market, which she founded. She recently completed the High Springs Food Security Project, a grant funded program sponsored by the Project for Public Spaces and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Prior to joining the agricultural community, Sharon developed extensive experience in the nonprofit world through her work with cultural and music programming.