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Planting the Seeds to Success

Planting the Seeds to Success

Last month, Feeding Florida’s Fresh Access Bucks (FAB) hosted their first Seeds to Success event. The virtual event, which we hope will become an annual tradition, offered the opportunity for attendees to connect with Florida farmers, farmers markets, and community partners, as well as organizations who are working to bring local food to individuals and families in Florida.

Sow, what happened?

The Seeds to Success event highlighted a variety of ways that farm-direct and retail partners across the state can grow their business and increase access to Florida-grown fruits and vegetables. 

To give tangible resources for growing small farms or markets, FAB brought together various partners to share tips and resources, including Marketlink, the Florida Department of Elder Affairs, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Florida Organic Growers, and Feeding Florida’s Nutrition Education and Agriculture Relations programs.

Here are the 5 key takeaways to get growing:

1.    Apply to accept SNAP and FAB at your outlet (and get free equipment)
2.    Sell your Florida-grown products through the Local Food Purchasing Assistance grant
3.    Add WIC and SFMNP programs at your outlet
4.    Promote with Florida Local Food Project and FL Farmers Market Association
5.    Schedule FREE nutrition education events at your outlet

Water your seeds!

Once these takeaways have begun blossoming, there is a critical next step- communication. Engaging in any of these opportunities to grow a farm or market means you must communicate it, so participants were encouraged to let everyone know, including customers, funders, supporters, other farms, fellow markets, and community partners. Getting the word out is as simple as sharing a social post or as significant as sending a newsletter or connecting with local media partners. To help with all of this, FAB shared some easy and free resources to help get folks started.

Ready to grow

If you missed this year’s event or want to dive into these opportunities more, you can find the recording and all of the resources in the Seeds to Success digest. For more information about Fresh Access Bucks, where to find an outlet near you, or to become an outlet, visit https://www.feedingflorida.org/food-access/fresh-access-bucks.

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