Do you know of any formal, academic studies that have been done to test
the multiplier effect of dollars spent at farmers' markets?
What about a multiplier effect over time? Does the existence of a
farmers' market over a time create demand for more producers? Do *new*
producers come into the market to meet that demand? Do those producers
create a demand for more suppliers to serve small farms and market
I guess the real question is, can the encouragement of farmers' markets be
considered a rural development strategy?
On Thu, 5 Feb 1998, JOHN OSULLIVAN wrote:
> Several people asked that I pass along the answers I got on my question
> posted a couple of weeks ago. I asked if anyone had information on the
> multiplier effect of local farm markets. I asked that question because I
> remembered some statement somewhere that money spent in certain autarkic
> communities might circulate within the community for 7 or 8 times before
> being spent outside the community. This was in distinction from other
> communities which wanted to be more autarkic but did not show this
> multiplier effect but immediately spent a dollar received back out of the
> I received half a dozen or so responses. There was strong agreement that
> it all depends. This makes sense to me but doesn't really help with
> promoting and justifying farm market development and gaining support from
> local governments. In North Carolina for example we have four large
> "farmers markets" run by the NC Dept of Agriculture. These are located in
> or near cities and are on interstates. We have local community farmers
> markets spread across the state from near to cities to very rural sites.
> We have up scale roadside stands and we have under a tree direct sales.
> Each of these might have different impacts.
> We had one market open last year in the town of Jacksonville. The farmers
> there took WIC produce vouchers. Over the summer they got $10,000 worth of
> these vouchers and estimated them to be 25% of the business so we can
> estimate market income to the 6-8 growers as approximately $40,000. Now we
> will have to explore further the buying habits of those marketers so as to
> be able to estimate the social value of the market.
> John M. O'Sullivan
> Farm Management & Marketing Specialist
> Southern Region SARE PDP Management Team Member
> North Carolina A&T State University
> P.O. Box 21928
> Greensboro NC 27455
> tel (336) 334-7957
> fax (336) 334-7207
> email firstname.lastname@example.org
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