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Farmers Market Displays for Young Entrepreneurs

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Publication Number: P3746
View as PDF: P3746.pdf

Growing Your Brand

Farmers Market Displays for Young Entrepreneurs

You can create eye-catching farmers market stalls to sell products from your farm. With just a few supplies, your stand will work for you, just like a silent salesperson, and draw customers to you.

In this publication, you will gain information on how to put together an award-winning market stand for a farmers market, county fair, or public festival.

Before we get started, it is good to know that no matter what you are selling, there are four basic steps in the marketing process. They are:

  • Gain customer attention and help people to notice your store.

    Signs, colors, and movement capture people’s eyes.

  • Focus their attention on specific products.

    People stop by stalls that have things they can buy.

  • Hold customers’ attention and allow them to gain interest in your products.

    Allow them to browse and learn about what you brought to the market.

  • Turn their interest into a sale.

    Nothing can happen in business until you make a sale!

Materials

Keeping these principles in mind, let’s create a farmers market stand!

You will need:

  • pop-up tent

    A light, portable tent protects you and your products from the sun and light rain.

  • sturdy folding table
  • table covering

    A covered table creates a clean, uniform appearance.

  • produce boxes or plastic bins

    Transport your fruit, vegetables, and flowers in the totes, then use them for displays.

  • wooden display boxes or baskets

    These will help keep loose products together and safe from damage.

  • lots of fresh and local produce
  • cash box and/or mobile payment equipment for a point-of-sale system
  • sign, company cap, or apron

    Tell everyone who you are with large lettering using your farm’s logo and colors.

  • individual signage for each item

    Label all produce with names and prices.

  • drinking water for you

    Don’t dehydrate in hot weather!

Signs

You can have a professionally made sign, but it is a good idea to make one yourself. This lets your customers know who you are, so let your colors shine through! Don’t forget smaller signs such as mini chalkboards to label produce names and prices.

Table

Your table provides the showcase for your products, whether they are vegetables, fruits, flowers, baked goods, or a little of everything! You’ll need a sturdy table that holds a lot of weight and can stand up to windy days. Make sure you can stabilize your table if you need to place it on a grass or dirt lot.

Display

Don’t stop with a plain old table! You want to bring your fresh produce closer to people’s eyes! Using crates and boxes, build up your display so that people can see it!

You can use a sheet set with the fitted sheet as a table cover and the flat sheet to cover your display boxes. Fitted sheets have elastic corners that stay put under the table legs. This covering helps to hide things under the table such as empty boxes and your cash box.

Now comes the fun part—displaying your products! Remember, you cannot make a sale from an empty cart, so it’s important to keep your displays looking plentiful. Avoid a lot of space between your products. Place them close together in massed displays. Abundant displays are much more enticing than sparse ones. Do remember to leave some room on the table to package your customers’ purchases.

Add some seasonal decorations, especially those that you can sell. Corn stalks in the fall and cut flowers in the summer can really boost sales.

Appearances Matter

Make sure you look as good as your stand! Wear a cap or apron with your company name or in your company colors. People will see these things before they see your merchandise, and appearances matter! Be sure to wash your hands before handling produce. Keep your personal food and beverages out of sight.

A Smile Goes A Long Way

Greet your customers as though they are guests in your home! Engage them with a smile. Tell them easy ways to cook with or use your products. Avoid sitting in your booth; keep busy when there are no customers. Your action will help people to notice your products.

Markets Are Fun

Give vending a try! You will learn a lot to help you build your work. Have fun and take pride in your farmers market stand!

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Scan the QR code to learn more about setting up your farmers market stall!

References

Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. (2018, March 16). Farmers market merchandising: Booth set up (Video). YouTube. 

Bright Agrotech. (2017, June 13). How should I set up my farmers market display? (Video). YouTube. 

A Little Dirt Never Hurt. (2019, September 6). How to set up a farmers market table (Video). YouTube. 

You Can’t Eat the Grass. (2019, August 21). Increase your farmers market sales with these 5 tips (Video). YouTube. 

Suscovich, J. (2013, March 7). Advice for selling at farmers markets (Video). YouTube. 

Publication 3746 (POD-03-22)

By James M. DelPrince, PhD, AIFD, PFCI, Associate Extension Professor, Coastal Mississippi Research and Extension Center; and Rachael Carter, PhD, Extension Specialist, Extension Center for Government and Community Development.

Copyright 2022 by Mississippi State University. All rights reserved. This publication may be copied and distributed without alteration for nonprofit educational purposes provided that credit is given to the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

Produced by Agricultural Communications.

Mississippi State University is an equal opportunity institution. Discrimination in university employment, programs, or activities based on race, color, ethnicity, sex, pregnancy, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, status as a U.S. veteran, or any other status protected by applicable law is prohibited.

Extension Service of Mississippi State University, cooperating with U.S. Department of Agriculture. Published in furtherance of Acts of Congress, May 8 and June 30, 1914. GARY B. JACKSON, Director

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Authors

Portrait of Dr. James M. DelPrince
Associate Extension Professor
Portrait of Dr. Rachael Carter
Extension Specialist I
Community Development, Tourism, Economics and Natural Resource Policy