The Greenbelt Farmers’ Market Network 2010 Shopper Study identified many reasons that customers love farmers’ markets, but also found them wanting MORE, including:

– a broader selection of products

-more value-added and prepared foods

-more ready-to-eat, convenient products

-more organic selections

-longer market seasons/ extended availability of produce

We would like to assist you in bringing new products and fresh ideas to your markets. Our New Products Program 2012 is designed to do just that. Send us an idea you want to try that responds to these customer demands, and we may be able to help you put your plan into action, with a micro-grant of $300-$1200 towards the cost of equipment and supplies.

Examples of eligible costs include, but are not limited to:

-materials for hoop houses for season extension

-processing equipment such as pressure canners or dehydrators

-specialized harvesting or transplanting equipment or tools

-packaging or labeling equipment for new products

This program is open to farmers who have a confirmed commitment to participate in one or more Greenbelt Farmers’ Market Network markets in 2012 (visit greenbeltfresh.ca for a list of network markets).

To qualify, you must have a plan to bring one or more new products to market in 2012. Products must be grown/raised on your farm, or made primarily from ingredients coming from your farm. Proposals will be evaluated for merit and responsiveness to customer demand on a first come, first served basis with a final deadline for submissions of February 27th. Funds are limited.

Not a grant writer? No worries, the application is brief, and if you wish you can call us to talk about your plans for 2012 and specific costs, and we will help with the paperwork.

Successful applicants will be required to submit a brief summary of results at the end of the 2012 outdoor market season and copies of related receipts.

Applications will be sent out February 6th. To request an application, or discuss any questions, please contact Anne Freeman or Sara Udow by February 3rd, at:

greenbeltfarmersmarketnetwork@gmail.com or 416-536-9103.

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