Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group          |          September 2017
25 Tips for Small Businesses Selling at Farmers Markets

by Annie Pilon

Farmers markets offer great opportunities for farmers and other small businesses to connect with customers and make sales. But it's not as easy as just reserving a booth and setting some products out on a table. Here are 25 tips to help you succeed when selling at farmers markets.

Hurricane Harvey Breaks Records while a Million Cows Stand in the Floodplains 

By now, hurricane-related headlines are rising as quickly as the rainfall totals are. And you surely know the facts: Earlier this month, Tropical Storm Harvey developed into a Category 4 hurricane, colliding on Friday night with Southeast Texas near Corpus Christi, and then hovering--parking, really--over Houston and its surrounding areas for days. 

Texas, home to the country's fourth-largest city, is also home to the most cattle, sheep, and goats in the nation.  And many of those ranches lie in floodplains. A herd of cattle outside of Dayton, Texas on Monday required a police escort to relocate to higher ground .

Photo by Meera Subramanian.
In Georgia's Peach Orchards, Warm Winters Raise Specter of Climate Change 

By  Meera Subramanian

Just outside the office of Dickey Farms is the retail shop, where customers drift into an open-air porch with white rocking chairs and a breeze, to consider peaches. Or, rather, the lack of peaches. 

It's mid-July, what should be peak season, but the only variety on offer is Zee Ladies, almost the last of this year's fruit. Behind the cash registers, the peach production line is still and silent, lights switched off.

The problem? Peaches need cold like you need sleep, not just any sleep but dream-state sleep, the deeper and more sustained the better. This year, they did not get it.

Let Them Eat Zucchini!  

By Carolina Farm Stewardship Association

Have you ever seen a study that says that it's healthier to eat fruits and vegetables than it is to eat just about anything else? Yeah, me too. It turns out that people aren't necessarily craving processed food more than a delicious zucchini. The price of fresh food is a big barrier to people choosing healthy options over more processed food. A recent study shows that reducing the price of fruits and vegetables by half doubles consumption. This could be disheartening news, given that farmers can't afford to charge half as much for their products, but at least one mobile grocery store in Charleston is trying to help. CFSA member Lowcountry Street Grocery is bringing the farmers market to food deserts and customers are using Health Bucks, which doubles SNAP recipients' buying power, when they use the benefit to buy local food.

Read more
Norm's Farms' Superpower Is Hidden in Its Superfruit, Elderberry, and They're Proud of It! 
Norm's Farms entered their Elderflower Ginger Syrup in a state competition and won first prize for best new product on the market by the North Carolina Specialty Food Association! Here they share  their favorite cocktail made from their blue-ribbon syrup.

"The Gin-Gin Allie is our new favorite cocktail. It is named after our awesome friend, Alison, who created this great drink while she was at our home for a weekend visit. The genesis story is simple. Cocktail hour arrived and Alison agreed to be our bartender while I finished up the chores and fed the dogs. We are blessed to live near several craft distilleries and the TOPO distillery has become locally famous for their organic gin."  
Read more | Get the cocktail recipe
Farm Bill Webinar Series:
Part 3 Coming Up on September 12

Join NSAC and SSAWG for a farm bill primer and grassroots strategy session. This four-part farm bill webinar series is designed to provide farmers, food producers and anyone who eats and cares about food an opportunity to get in-depth information about the farm bill, share information and concerns and develop ways to get involved and participate in farm bill grassroots activities. 

Aug. 15 -- Part 1: Farm Bill 101
Aug. 29 -- Part 2: Key Programs and Opportunities for Change
Sept. 12 -- Part 3: Advocacy for Busy People
Sept. 26 -- Part 4: Strategy Discussion
All webinars will be held at  3 pm ET/2 pm CT. Click on a link to register. Part 1 and 2 have been recorded. You can find links to webinar and notes  here.

Help ensure the sustainable ag community has a common language and build a strategy to protect our resources in the 2018 farm bill. 
Our Mission

Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group's mission is to empower and inspire farmers, individuals, and communities in the South to create an agricultural system that is ecologically sound, economically viable, socially just, and humane. Because sustainable solutions depend on the involvement of the entire community, Southern SAWG is committed to including all persons in the South without bias.
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