Table-to-Farm Marketing- Authenticity is Key

Jane L. Levere reported in today’s New York Times that, “Jana McClelland is a third-generation dairy farmer in Petaluma, Calif. This October, she expects 600 to 1,200 people to visit her family’s farm.

“She plans to take them to the nursery, the milking parlor and the pastures…[I]t is all part of an outreach strategy from Organic Valley, which bills itself as the largest cooperative of organic farmers in the United States. Call it table-to-farm marketing.”

Today’s article explained that, “These initiatives, which include a new website, are meant to cater to what the Organic Trade Association describes as people’s increasing interest in ‘transparency in the supply chain and to know where food comes from.’

“According to the trade group, sales of organic food and nonfood products in the United States climbed to $44.3 billion in 2015 from $40.4 billion in 2014, which represents the industry’s largest dollar gain ever; $39.7 billion of last year’s total sales were for organic food. The association also said organic food sales rose 10.8 percent in 2015.

Organic food sales now make up almost 5 percent of the food sold in the United States. According to the trade group, millennial consumers, particularly in urban centers, are driving much of that growth.”

The Times article added that, “Authenticity is ‘the biggest key for consumers,’ said Sarah Z. Masoni, product and process development manager at the Food Innovation Center at Oregon State University. ‘They want to know who’s creating their food. Consumers want to trust the suppliers of their food.'”

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