This research investigates the barriers to participation in farmers’ markets by the wider farming community in South Australia (SA) with a particular focus on small to medium sized primary producers.

While the experiences and motivations of farmers participating in markets outside Australia have been studied, there has been very little research conducted in Australia or internationally on raw food producers who remain outside the farmers’ market community.

Internationally applicable, the key findings of the research are:

  1. Farmer market regulation - excessive bureaucracy and form filling
  2. Farmer market cost - perceived high cost of market insurance and stall fees
  3. Farmer market supply - difficulties attached to regular and sufficient supply of produce
  4. Farmer market participation - extra time commitment and need for more staff
  5. Issues in participation are not the same for every farmer
  6. Producer comments allude to stretched time commitments, restrictive market regulations and practices, limitations on produce type and for older farmers, lack of interest in new ventures.

Incentives to encourage participation in farmers' market by local producers:

  • Provision of market infrastructure for a trial period.
  • More information on how farmers' markets operate.
  • Training in how to supply produce to a farmers market regularly.

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