Kansas has experienced a dramatic increase in farmers markets over the past twenty-four years. In 1987, the first year markets were surveyed, Kansas was home to 26 farmers markets. Today that number has almost quadrupled to the current census of 101 markets statewide.
Similar statistics are demonstrated nationally. In 1994, there were approximately 1,755 farmers markets in the United States. In 2008 their numbers have more than doubled — to more than 4,685. In excess of 3 million consumers shop and more than 60,000 farmers sell at these markets annually. The United States Department of Agriculture estimates that these markets generate more than $1 billion in consumer spending each year.
The KS Farmers Markets website has three primary goals:
- Connect Kansas eaters with their hometown markets.
- Inform and inspire Kansas market farmers.
- Educate and support Kansas communities in their efforts to establish and strengthen farmers markets.
The KS Farmers Market website is a project of the Kansas Rural Center (KRC) made possible by funding from the Kansas Department of Agriculture and The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service's Farmers Market Promotion Program.
KRC's Farmers Market Project
For more than a decade, the Kansas Rural Center has supported the development of Kansas' farmers markets through statewide conferences, producer workshops, manager/board training, publications, market mini-grants and cost-free consultation services. Kansas markets are deeply indebted to the pioneering work of Jerry Jost, the project's first director. Mercedes Taylor-Puckett took the program in a wide variety of new and valuable directions while she was with the KRC. Tracey Graham currently coordinates KRC's Farmers Market Project. For more information on the project, please contact twinrivers [dot] olf [at] gmail [dot] com (Tracey).
Kansas Rural Center
The Kansas Rural Center, Inc. (KRC) is a non-profit organization that promotes the long-term health of the land and its people through research, education, and advocacy.
The KRC cultivates grassroots support for public policies that encourage family farming and stewardship of soil and water. The KRC is committed to economically viable, environmentally sound, and socially sustainable rural culture.
Please visit the Kansas Rural Center online to learn how you can become involved.