Bord Bia to host farmers’ market workshops

Bord Bia is set to host a series of skills workshops designed for farmers’ market producers this September.

Specially developed by Bord Bia, ‘Skills Training for Selling at Farmers’ Markets’ is open to Irish food, drink, seafood and horticulture producers and aimed at both existing stall holders and first-time producers.

The events will be delivered by experienced stall holder and farmer, Margaret Hoctor of Kilmullen Farm in Co. Wicklow.

The half-day workshops will cover the “wide variety of knowledge and skills required to sell at farmers’ markets including sales and marketing skills, budgeting, stall management and customer service”, according to Bord Bia.

L-R: Margaret Hoctor, Kilmullen Farm, Co. Wicklow; Minister of State for Food, Forestry and Horticulture Andrew Doyle; and Maria Stokes, trade marketing specialist with Bord Bia. Image source: Chris Bellew, Fennell Photography

Speaking at the launch, Minister of State for Food, Forestry and Horticulture Andrew Doyle said: “Farmers’ markets are an important feature of the Irish food industry, benefiting both consumers, producers and the local community.

“Now into its third year, these Bord Bia workshops have assisted the development of many local food businesses and the thriving farmers’ market channel and are also responding to consumer demands for sourcing and buying locally-produced food.”

Farmers’ markets are becoming increasingly popular with consumers with Bord Bia identifying over 150 food markets in Ireland in 2014, including community markets, farmers markets, lunch-time markets, weekend city markets, co-operatives and country markets.

A recent study by Bord Bia, into Irish and British consumers and their food – Bord Bia Periscope, 2017 – found that buying local is important to over two thirds of consumers in the Republic of Ireland.

The same study found that farmers markets are synonymous with local food with 41% of consumers describing ‘local food’ as “food available in farmers’ markets”.

The practical and interactive half-day workshops will take place around the country at the following locations:
  • Acton’s Hotel, Kinsale, Co. Cork on Tuesday September 4;
  • Airfield Estate, Dundrum, Dublin, on Wednesday, September 5;
  • Coolbawn Quay, Lough Derg, Co. Tipperary, on Tuesday, September 25; and
  • Knockranny House Hotel, Westport, Co. Mayo, on Wednesday, September 26.

All workshops begin at 9:00am and run until 2:00pm. A €20 charge per person applies and you must register at least three days in advance of the workshop date.

Numbers are limited, so interested parties are encouraged to register now to avoid disappointment, according to Bord Bia. For registration and further information check out the Bord Bia website here.