July 8, 2010
Study: Sacramento leads country in farm-to-consumer sales

Sacramento area farmers are an especially savvy bunch when it comes to marketing to local consumers. That was among the findings in a recent study by Shermain Hardesty, a Cooperative Extension economist in the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics. Her research found that 14 percent of Sacramento-area farms marketed directly to consumers, compared to just nine percent of farmers nationally.

Hardesty was part of a research team that studied how locally grown food is supplied to consumers around the country. Other areas studied included Oregon, Minnesota, New York and Washington D.C. The study was The study funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service.

Hardesty's research included interviews with farmers, supermarkets and produce distributors.

"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," said Hardesty in a statement.

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