Farmers Markets in Rural Communities: A Case Study

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American Journal of Health Education




Background: Although the potential health benefits of farmers markets have been discussed for years, there is a dearth of literature to aid health educators in advocating for the development of local farmers markets.

Purpose: The purpose of this manuscript is to present a case study of a rural farmers market in southeast Georgia with emphasis on operational procedures and customer satisfaction.

Methods: A mini-ethnography was conducted over a seven-week period using participant observation, document review and brief interviews. Results: Observational results suggested the farmers market operates smoothly and has resulted in high levels of customer satisfaction. Challenges should be addressed, including the seasonal nature of farming and attracting those who are not already motivated to eat healthy. Innovative strategies for reaching consumers throughout the year include taking farmers markets online.

Discussion: An ecological approach such as farmers markets, which reach of hundreds of rural customers each week, represents a legitimate population-based approach to addressing obesity. Translation to Health Education.

Practice: By working with communities to develop local farmers markets, health educators in rural communities can help increase local capacity for healthier lifestyles.