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Posts Tagged ‘NH Department of Agriculture’

Surveys Show Granite Staters Enthusiastically Support Local Farmers’ Markets

Monday, September 11th, 2017

A high percentage of Granite Staters who answered recent surveys say they have shopped at a local farmers’ market, mainly to support local farms and have access to high quality products, according to the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture, Markets & Food.

Granite Staters head to their local farmers’ markets for quality products and the fun of the experience, according to a recent survey.

Two surveys were conducted from February through April 2017 as part of a collaboration of the agriculture department; the University of New Hampshire Department of Natural and Cultural Resources; the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension and the New Hampshire Farmers’ Market Association.

The first was conducted via telephone as part of the Granite State Polling program where New Hampshire residents were called at random and asked about their farmers’ market experiences. The second was an online survey offered to existing farmers’ market shoppers from across the state.

Shopping habits at both summer and winter farmers markets were examined. The goal of the project was to obtain information about consumer shopping experiences and attitudes related to farmers’ markets that would then be helpful to farmers and market coordinators in meeting shoppers’ needs.

More than 500 responded to the phone survey, with 84 percent of them reporting they had shopped at a farmers’ market. Product quality, variety, market hours and location were all important to the shopping experience.

For the 16 percent who said they had never shopped at a farmers market, it was because there was not one nearby or did not know of them. Inconvenience and lack of time to shop at a farmers’ market were also among the reasons cited.

The results of the second survey show that 60 percent of the 369 participants said they shopped at both summer and winter markets in 2016 and nearly 40 percent visited a farmers’ market once a week. More than half said they shopped at a farmers’ market in 2016 with the same frequency as 2015, but about 30 percent said they shopped at a farmers’ market more often in 2016.

Many respondents said that in addition to their desire to support local agriculture and buy fresh and high-quality products, they came to farmers’ markets because the experience was fun and they enjoyed seeing and interacting with people in those places.

The full survey report will be available soon and found on the partner organizations’ websites. For more information contact Gail McWilliam Jellie at 603-271-3788, gail.mcwilliam.jellie@agr.nh.gov, or visit the Department of Agriculture, Markets & Food at www.agriculture.nh.gov

New Hampshire Agriculture and the Economy and Other Interesting Things

Friday, April 21st, 2017

radioNow that we have seen the last of the snow (inasmuch as we can say that for New Hampshire in April!), there are those who can’t wait to sink their hands into the dirt and get going on their garden.

New Hampshire Business Matters airs at 3:05 pm every third Wednesday on WTPL-FM, 107.7

Agriculture, at $1.5 billion, is a big contributor to our economy and according to the state Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food, the number of New Hampshire farms increase 5 percent according to the 2012 Agricultural Census, at a time when farms were decreasing nationwide by 4 percent.

On our monthly radio show this week, Gail McWilliam Jellie of the Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food, was our guest this week and talked about what’s happening in this industry.

Tune in.


An Export Program Boosting Agricultural-related Businesses

Sunday, May 19th, 2013

Through a partnership with Food Export USA – Northeast, the International Trade Resource Center offers a service to assist food and agriculture companies in New Hampshire with their export initiatives.

The State Export Initiative grant program provides up to $500 per company in cash reimbursement to qualified businesses to offset a portion of the qualifying expenses associated with export promotion activities. This matching grant allows them to receive reimbursement of up to 50 percent of qualified costs.

These funds have encouraged businesses to explore exporting and have aided many in participating in export-related activities at half the price, like Heron Point Seafood of Newmarket. Because the grant extends to businesses that have agricultural-based ingredients, from beer to beauty products, they also qualify for the program.

“This grant helped fund our participation in a major food show in China last fall that allowed us to meet some 40 new potential customers, some of whom we have already made sales to,” said Dave Jermain, sales manager for Heron Point. “The reimbursement is also supporting a sales trip to Japan later this summer to help us strengthen our relationships with existing customers and meet with new potential customers, as well as translation of our product brochure.”

 So, you’re probably thinking – what’s the catch? Is it really that easy?

The program is a three-step process. A two-page application outlines the export related activity and how participating will allow the business to grow. If approved, the reimbursement of 50 percent of the receipts is made, up to $500.

This program is also in cooperation with the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture and agriculture-related businesses across the state have taken advantage of this opportunity.

Jill Robbins

Jill Robbins

HomeFree of Windham, which makes allergy friendly products, was awarded reimbursement for participation in a costly trade show, which president Jill Robbins said would have been costly for her small business.

The CHFA West trade show, in Vancouver, Canada, is the largest trade show for the natural health and organics industry.

“I applied and submitted my receipts after attending and they qualified to receive the maximum reimbursement,” she said. “This enabled me to make other investments in the company.”

The ITRC is still accepting applications for this program. Whether your business is just getting started or is already exporting to several markets, we are eager to help you increase you export sales and continue to grow internationally.

For guidelines and application packet, contact the ITRC; email ellie.white@dred.state.nh.us or call the ITRC at (603)-271-8444.


Adrienne Messe

Intern, International Trade Resource Center