AN INTEGRATED MARKET SYSTEM MODEL FOR SMALL&MEDIUM-SIZED FARMS
Small Business Information
3654 MARIETTA AVE STE 600, Lancaster, PA, 17601-1184
AbstractAs an effort to improve market efficiency for local food, expand potential market space, increase profitability for small and medium-sized farms (SMFs), and ensure food safety along the value chain, Eden's Bowl proposes this project to research economic and technical feasibility of an integrated market model using alternative marketing channel to facilitate the sales and delivery of local food. Sales from SMFs directly to consumers have expanded significantly, but there are several barriers and system deficiencies that make selling higher volumes to buyers difficult.. This research aims to address these barriers to develop an efficient market model to better tie local producers to buyers, by providing aggregation, coordination, and other marketing functions and optimizing value chains to release key constraints in the development of a local food system, such as information asymmetry, coordination failure, and other factors limiting the market efficiency. Taking all the parts needed to develop such a market for SMFs into consideration, its team employs a holistic system approach to the formation of such an integrated system which directly connects buyers with SMFs for the sales of fresh produce. The goal of this project is to study the economic and technical feasibility of such an integrated system model, by researching the incentives available to and required by key stakeholders and evaluating the system performance, while releasing market constraints. The overall project has a direct objective of establishing new market model for local agriculture that capitalizes on community network. The success of this project entails the following social benefits. Such a system could significantly increase the sales from SMFs directly to consumers, and this will lead to job creation along the value chain, and will enhance economic opportunity for SMFs and local work force. It would also help create a safe, nutritious and affordable food supply, by offering greater amount of local, fresh produce with transparency. In addition, decentralizing production and distribution brings in redundancy and resiliency across geographic regions, and this helps create localized community food safety. It will also help drive down the consumption of transportation fuel.
* information listed above is at the time of submission.