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National Farmers’ Market Week: August 6-12, 2017
Grab and Go Packet

Compiled by: Community Partnerships for Healthy Mothers and Children (CPHMC) staff at the National WIC Association (NWA) and drawing heavily from FMC’s NFMW materials National Farmers’ Market Week (NFMW) is recognized on the calendar of National Health Observances.

National Farmers’ Market Week is an annual celebration sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) that highlights the important role farmers’ markets play in the nation’s food system. This packet provides information about farmers’ markets as they relate to community health, as well as ways that you can get involved in promoting NFMW and/or events happening at markets in your community.

How does National Farmers’ Market Week support our project?
As a member of the Partnering4Health community, you are also part of the national movement to improve access to healthy, sustainably grown food. Farmers’ markets bring families from all backgrounds together to socialize, purchase healthy, affordable food, and learn about how their food was grown. The establishment of farmers’ markets is an environmental change that can have long-term positive effects on community health and chronic disease prevention.

How do we take action?
Here are a few ways to take action and to make the connection between your work and National Farmers’ Market Week:
● Use this packet to raise awareness about the #Partnering4Health project in your community. You are part of a national movement to improve access to healthy food at farmers’ markets – share the news with residents, media, businesses, and leaders!
● Add information about your work with farmers’ markets to your newsletter, website, blog, or social media profile.
● Celebrate National Farmers’ Market Week with a special event at a local market and invite your local leaders! A simple invitation can put a visit to your community market on their calendar and may lead to local media outlets stopping by for a news story!

How do we talk about NFMW?
When communicating with community members, leaders, and partners, it’s important to be ready to talk about the issues. Here are some facts and figures that will help you be a good spokesperson for NFMW:

According to the 2017 National Farmers’ Market Week Media Kit, farmers’ markets:
o Preserve America’s rural livelihood and farmland
o Stimulate local economies
o Increase access to fresh, nutritious food
o Support healthy communities and stronger social networks
o Promote sustainability

Studies have suggested that proximity to farmers’ markets leads to increased consumption of fruits and vegetables for community members and is associated with a lower body mass index (BMI) score. In addition, one study reported that 28% of survey respondents said the greatest benefit of their local farmers’ market is that it “brings people together” (2016 National Farmers’ Market Week Media Kit).

Currently, there are more than 8,500 farmers’ markets across the U.S., which is 50% more than just 5 years ago. Competitive prices and special programs at farmers’ markets specifically targeting low-income families are expanding access to fresh, healthy food in communities that need it most. According to the USDA, over 5,000 farmers’ markets across the country now accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, with new locations accepting SNAP increasing at an average rate of 40% per year (2016 NFMW Media Kit).

Here are some sample social media posts if you would like to share the PSAs on your social media page(s):

Facebook:

@DirectorsofHealthPromotionAndEducation has released 3 Eat Right – Long Life #Choose2BHealthy PSAs to present community partnership best practices as shown by @CrescentCityWICServices and the @AudubonNatureInstitute. The PSAs inform mothers of young children that they can have fresh fruits and veggies and help with nutrition choices through USDA’s Farmers Market Nutrition Program. http://bit.ly/DHPEyoutube

3,390+ markets accept WIC Farmers Market Nutrition Program vouchers! Ask your local #WIC agency! #Choose2BHealthy! #Partnering4Health https://youtu.be/s4b2-6lFC-I

Check out your local Farmers’ Market! Your local #WIC office may have coupons to cover the cost of fresh produce! #Choose2BHealthy! #Partnering4Health

Twitter:

@DHPETweets produced 60sec Eat Right–Long Life #Choose2BHealthy PSA video featuring @CCWIC @NatWICAssoc ow.ly/RsS130bSLB4

Check out @DHPETweets 3 Eat Right – Long Life #Choose2BHealthy PSA videos about Farmers’ Market Prog @CCWIC @NatWICAssoc

Have you heard about the #WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Prog? Free fresh food! #Choose2BHealthy! #Partnering4Health

WIC Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program makes fresh food avail to those who live in food deserts. #Choose2BHealthy! #Partnering4Health

3,390+ markets accept WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program vouchers! Ask your local #WIC agency #Choose2BHealthy! #Partnering4Health

How do we keep the conversation going?
Keeping your community members, coalition partners, and local leaders informed throughout National Farmers’ Market Week is important to maintaining momentum around the national health observance – and your project. Please feel free to use or modify any of the social media or newsletter content below.

Remember to consider your audience. Community members may not be familiar with public health jargon – and community leaders or partners may want to understand how their organizations will benefit from engaging in your work. Consider what would be meaningful in your project areas.

A great resource for Twitter and Facebook is the Farmers’ Market Coalition’s 2017 NFMW Graphics. Check it out for reusable photos and infographics.

Sample Newsletter Language

Newsletters to partner groups can be used to promote National Farmers’ Market Week. You can use the template below in your newsletter (modified from FMC’s sample newsletter announcement), making sure to tailor it to your specific audience. Also, consider using graphics in your newsletter.
We are excited to kick off National Farmers’ Market Week (August 6-12, 2017)! In celebration, {Your Coalition} is {list events/activities such as tasting days, guest chefs, local celebrity/politician appearances, cooking demonstrations, educational events, book signings, etc. Note date and time if applicable}. As a member of the Partnering4Health community, we are also part of the national movement to improve access to healthy, sustainably grown food. Farmers’ markets are much more than just an outlet for fresh produce and friendly farmers. According to the Farmers’ Market Coalition, Farmers’ Markets:

  • Stimulate local economies
  • Increase access to fresh, nutritious food
  • Support healthy communities
  • Promote sustainability
  • Find (and share!) more farmers’ market facts here…
    {Can include a sentence of two here about your coalition’s work with farmers’ markets.}

Here are a few ways to take action and to make the connection between your work and National Farmers’ Market Week:
● Spread the word about National Farmers’ Market Week using social media. You can use the hash tag #FarmersMarketWeek along with the #Partnering4Health hash tag.
● Celebrate National Farmers’ Market Week with a special event at a local market and invite your local leaders! A simple invitation can put a visit to your community market on their calendar and may lead to local media outlets stopping by for a news story!

Together we can help ensure that all communities have access to healthy, fresh produce!

Are other resources available?

  • Follow @FMCorg (the Farmers’ Market Coalition), who is the official sponsor of Farmers’ Market Week. They will be tweeting about Farmers’ Market Week all week long!
  • Consider issuing a press release about National Farmers’ Market Week and how you are celebrating NFMW in your community. You can find a press release template from FMC here.