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Conference Name Marketing Strategies for New Organic Farms

Christopher Brown


ALBA is a non-profit organic farm incubator in the Salinas Valley operating on a 100-acre organic farm. We serve mainly mexican immigrant farmworkers who have the talent and drive to pursue farm ownership but lack the language, capital and local business experience to make it happen. The 5-year program gives them subsidized access to land, farm equipment and technical assistance in production, management and regulatory compliance.

Marketing presents a significant challenge in a food distribution system that caters to large, corporate growers. Moreover, our food hub, ALBA Organics closed in 2017, leaving farmers without cooling, storage and marketing services.

The WERME 'Marketing Strategies for New Organic Farms' project was ALBA's first attempt to establish a 'market facilitation' service for our start-up farmers, helping them identify and establish client relationships that they could manage on their own. The presentation will discuss the steps we took to help farmers adjust to self-directed marketing strategies.