Management & Marketing
The farmers market has generally made up a smaller percentage of Adam and Laura’s direct-market sales (33.3-50.8%). Their current breakdown of direct sales is two-thirds CSA to one-third farmers market. They have been participating in the Mill City market in Minneapolis each weekend from May through October since 2006 (Figure 51). The farmers market is time-intensive in the sense that they must spend a whole day off the farm, but the market provides them with two benefits – profitable sales and an advertising opportunity (see Figure 31).
|Although it is a relatively small part of their operating budget, Laura and Adam do incur some advertising costs. There are fees associated with Local Harvest and the Land Stewardship’s Project CSA directory, for example, and in 2009 they paid some blog and Web site fees.||
Figure 51: Adam and Laura at their booth in the Mill City Farmers' Market in Minneapolis.
Video of farmers' market preparation
When asked why they think Loon Organics is so locally well-known for such a relatively small and new operation, they attribute it to several factors. They benefited from some press received through Twin Cities newspapers, and their profile was raised through their affiliation with the prominent Gardens of Eagan and their participation in a high-traffic, Minneapolis farmers market. The appeal of their “back to the land” story has also provided them with some notoriety, especially as the local food movement has gained more attention in the media.