Tips to Make Your Market Thrive

Farmers market, Kingsport, Tenn.

​Shoppers at the Kingsport, Tennessee, farmers market seem to truly enjoy the experience. Photo courtesy UTIA. Download image.


SPRING HILL, Tenn. – Making a farmers market become a favorite shopping experience for a community takes vendors with fresh products and a leader who knows how to wear several hats well, especially those that engender trust with their customers that the market will provide safe, wholesome foods and a safe shopping experience.

On November 29 (Chattanooga) and December 1 (Jackson), specialists from the University of Tennessee Center for Profitable Agriculture, UT Departments of Food Science and Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science, the National Ag Law Center and the Tennessee Department of Agriculture will present an all-day workshop designed to help market managers and others with farmers market responsibilities learn about topics that will help make their market and market’s products safer.

Greer Gill, Marketing Specialist with Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDA) says, “A good market manager knows proper handling practices and regulations and will motivate vendors to focus on food safety. That same manager is prepared to deal with emergencies while also providing excellent customer service.”

The “Farmers Market Manager Training” workshops will present information about good handling practices, good agricultural practices, sampling, regulatory adherence, motivating adherence to food safety best practices and methods to provide excellent customer service to market vendors, customers and stakeholders. Premises safety and severe weather preparedness, business organization, insurance, taking SNAP and market rules also will be discussed.

During the workshops Hal Pepper from the UT Center for Profitable Agriculture will lead a panel of market managers in discussing liability risks at farmers markets and how they have addressed them.

These workshops will be for farmers market managers, officers, board members and city/county officials with farmers market responsibilities. The workshops will be conducted in Chattanooga (Nov. 29) and Jackson (Dec. 1) and will begin at 9:30 a.m. and end by 4:00 p.m. local time. Check-in and networking will be from 9 to 9:30 a.m.
There is a $40 registration fee for the workshop. Pre-registration is required by November 21 as space is limited. A meal will be provided. Information about the workshop is available on the Center’s website at Register for the workshop now at

The “Farmers Market Manager Training” workshop was developed by the UT Center for Profitable Agriculture. Sponsors include TDA and the Tennessee Association of Farmers Markets. 

The Center for Profitable Agriculture is a joint effort of University of Tennessee Extension and the Tennessee Farm Bureau Federation.

Through its mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture (UTIA) touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions.



Hal Pepper, Center for Profitable Agriculture, 931-486-2777,