- Author: Jeannette E. Warnert
Fourteen percent of Sacramento-area farms market directly to consumers, compared to just nine percent of farmers nationally, according to research by Shermain Hardesty, UC Davis Cooperative Extension economist. The study was publicized in a UC Davis news release, and picked in the Sacramento Business Journal.
Hardesty found that farms in the Sacramento region averaged $19,518 in annual income in direct sales - at such outlets as farmers markets and roadside stands. California farms' direct sales income ranged from an average of $6,924 in Placer County to $66,568 in Yolo County.“We were especially interested to find that, even after deducting the added costs of transportation, distribution and selling at the farmers market or other point of sale, the farmers are still able to net a greater share of retail prices in local food supply chains than they would had they used conventional marketing chains,” the news release quoted Hardesty.
For example, mixed greens growers in Monterey County receive on average 79 cents per pound by marketing through conventional channels. One Yolo County grower netted seven times that price at a farmers market.
The full report, “Comparing the Structure, Size, and Performance of Local and Mainstream Food Supply Chains,” is available from USDA.