The Kansas Department of Agriculture, K-State Research and Extension and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment will host four regional workshops in February 2017 to assist farmers’ market vendors and managers.
Kansas farmers’ markets not only provide a fresh food source, but also stimulate the local economy. In 2016, 75 farmers’ markets were registered with KDA’s Central Registration of Farmers’ Markets.
“Selling food directly to consumers through farmers’ markets provides growers a chance to tell their farm’s story, but there are also legal, safety and financial parameters that farmers need to understand before choosing this marketing tool,” said Londa Nwadike, consumer food safety specialist with K-State Research and Extension and the University of Missouri.
Workshop topics will vary slightly by location. Highlighted topics include:
• Keynote speakers on successful farmers’ market vending
• Double Up Food Bucks SNAP matching program
• Kansas Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program Certified Farmer Training
• Cover cropping and other soil health strategies
KDA’s Division of Weights and Measures will also offer free scale certification at the workshops for attendees.
Dates and locations for the Farmers’ Market events are as follows: Feb. 4 — KSU Sedgwick County Extension Office, 7001 W. 21st N., Wichita; Feb. 10 — KSU Olathe, 22201 W. Innovation Dr., Olathe; Feb. 11 — Greenbush Education Service Center (Dave DeMoss Education Building), 947 W. 47 Highway, Girard; Feb. 17 — KSU Agriculture Research Center, 1232 240th Ave., Hays
In addition, farmers’ market vendors and managers are encouraged to attend the 2017 From the Land of Kansas and Farmers’ Market State Conference on March 16 and 17 at the Bluemont Hotel in Manhattan.
Registration for the February workshops is now open and is $20 per participant. Registration includes lunch, however, lunch will only be guaranteed to those participants who register at least 10 days prior to the respective workshop date. Registration forms can be found at FromtheLandofKansas.com/FMConference or at local extension offices.
Onsite registration will open at 8:30 a.m. and the workshops will begin at 9 a.m. and conclude by 4 p.m. The Wichita workshop will begin online registration at 8:15 a.m. and the workshop at 8:45 a.m.
Registration for the March 2017 From the Land of Kansas and Farmers’ Market State Conference is $75 for one day and $95 for both days. Registration is expected to be open late January at FromtheLandofKansas.com/FMConference and will close March 8, 2017.
KDA is committed to providing an environment that enhances and encourages economic growth of the agriculture industry and the Kansas economy. These workshops will provide support and assistance to help make Kansas businesses more successful.
For more information, contact Janelle Dobbins, KDA’s From the Land of Kansas marketing manager, at (785) 564-6759 or Janelle.Dobbins@ks.gov.