Just because local farmers markets have come to a rest doesn’t mean the crew at Boulder County Farmers Markets (BCFM) has taken a break — and neither have the vendors, for that matter.
There is a sense of rest in the off-season, but along with that comes motivation to build on last year’s success. The market office in Boulder has been bustling with new vendor conversations and samplings from different products. Connections with local growers are being made and farm visits are being scheduled for the spring.
Each year, every vendor reapplies to the market and the BCFM board votes to accept returning and new vendors. Market-lovers will be happy to hear that this board is made up of a majority of farmers, with the aim of the board to keep agriculture at the top of their minds with every approval.
The operations team and board work together to assess the landscape of each market location with the following questions in mind: What is the market missing? Which vendors are not reapplying? Is this new trend worth integrating into the market? Is this product oversaturated?
Careful consideration and placement of each vendor is crucial to the season ahead.
It is one of the BCFM crew’s favorite times of the year, as the team gets to learn what drives the community. Each vendor has their own story to tell and they get to tell us why they produce their product and what they want to bring to the market. Everyone’s reasons for wanting to sell their product varies — whether it’s a chronic illness that sparked a vendor to create an alternative, tasty treat, or worldly travels that inspired a return to tradition, or a vendor that had goals to become self-sufficient at home and wanted share it with the community — but the end goal for everyone is the same: sharing and building community.
Start the countdown now, only 12 weeks until the market is back in action.