Now that we have had our third mobile market, I have a good sense of how it operates successfully, and what changes we need to make. With such a high demand for fresh fruits and vegetables in Mingo County, and really throughout the region, I knew from the beginning that I would be a proponent for mobile markets. Last week I wrote about our excellent Youtworks volunteers (I hope some of you looked into them!!) and the excellent work they have been doing (see our immaculate garden below). This week, they helped us pick and prepare for our third mobile farmers market in Matewan. Some things to brag on, and also consider for those who may consider starting a mobile market:
- Keep CLOSE track of all produce. Our market is currently running on a consignment model. While we get some produce from the gardens, much of the rest of it comes from our farmers. The first two markets were a little confusing but I think now we have a it down.
- WE MADE OVER $700 in sales at this market!!
- Through a grant with the Conservation Fund, we were able to provide $359 worth of fruits and vegetables to family this week along—this number will be $6,000 by the end of the summer.
- Do as much outreach as you can. For each site that we have went to, we have been targeting all organizations and businesses that are in proximity. This has highly increased participation.
- Another key to our success at this event was PARTNERSHIPS. WVU brought their “Backdoor Habitat” equipment, which you can see below was a huge draw for children. West Virginia on the Move brought swag and an obstacle course, and we also had someone read children’s books aloud, and had the Diabetes Coalition’s Alexis Batausa hosting physical fitness activities.