Pick up know-how for tackling diseases, pests and weeds.
Farm bill, farm marketing, agribusiness webinars, & farm policy.
Find tactics for healthy livestock and sound forages.
Scheduling and methods of irrigation.
Explore our Extension locations around the state.
Commercial row crop production in Arkansas.
Agriculture weed management resources.
Use virtual and real tools to improve critical calculations for farms and ranches.
Learn to ID forages and more.
Explore our research locations around the state.
Get the latest research results from our county agents.
Our programs include aquaculture, diagnostics, and energy conservation.
Keep our food, fiber and fuel supplies safe from disaster.
Private, Commercial & Non-commercial training and education.
Specialty crops including turfgrass, vegetables, fruits, and ornamentals.
Find educational resources and get youth engaged in agriculture.
Gaining garden smarts and sharing skills.
Timely tips for the Arkansas home gardener.
Creating beauty in and around the home.
Maintenance calendar, and best practices.
Coaxing the best produce from asparagus to zucchini.
What’s wrong with my plants? The clinic can help.
Featured trees, vines, shrubs and flowers.
Ask our experts plant, animal, or insect questions.
Enjoying the sweet fruits of your labor.
Herbs, native plants, & reference desk QA.
Growing together from youth to maturity.
Crapemyrtles, hydrangeas, hort glossary, and weed ID databases.
Get beekeeping, honey production, and class information.
Grow a pollinator-friendly garden.
Schedule these timely events on your gardening calendar.
Equipping individuals to lead organizations, communities, and regions.
Guiding communities and regions toward vibrant and sustainable futures.
Guiding entrepreneurs from concept to profit.
Position your business to compete for government contracts.
Find trends, opportunities and impacts.
Providing unbiased information to enable educated votes on critical issues.
Increase your knowledge of public issues & get involved.
Research-based connection to government and policy issues.
Support Arkansas local food initiatives.
Read about our efforts.
Preparing for and recovering from disasters.
Licensing for forestry and wildlife professionals.
Preserving water quality and quantity.
Cleaner air for healthier living.
Firewood & bioenergy resources.
Managing a complex forest ecosystem.
Read about nature across Arkansas and the U.S.
Learn to manage wildlife on your land.
Soil quality and its use here in Arkansas.
Learn to ID unwanted plant and animal visitors.
Timely updates from our specialists.
Eating right and staying healthy.
Ensuring safe meals.
Take charge of your well-being.
Cooking with Arkansas foods.
Making the most of your money.
Making sound choices for families and ourselves.
Nurturing our future.
Get tips for food, fitness, finance, and more!
Understanding aging and its effects.
Giving back to the community.
Managing safely when disaster strikes.
Listen to our latest episode!
by Morgan Gramlich and Dr. Renee Threlfall - January 6, 2020
Here is an update from Horticulture graduate student Morgan Gramlich on her study
of value-added products from farmer's markets!
The purpose of this study was to track farmers market trends (produce availability,
number of vendors selling a given produce item, and produce price) to determine the
potential for producing value-added foods (jam, jelly, salsa, etc.) from farmers market
surplus. Our goal was to reduce food waste and create value-added products that produce
vendors or farmers markets could sell to increase revenue. The data collected was
used to determine what produce was likely in surplus at a farmers market and when
during the market season the surplus produce would be available at the lowest cost.
The farmers market used for this project was The Original Rogers Farmers Market located
in Rogers, Arkansas. Recommendations for potential value-added food products were
made through the interpretation of data collected from this market.
The Original Rogers Farmers Market had about 20 vendors from Arkansas and Oklahoma,
and 4-8 of these vendors sold produce during any given week. At this market, produce
vendors were encouraged by the market manager to maintain their prices consistent
with the weekly market average. Data was collected on market days (Wednesdays and
Saturdays) for fourteen weeks (June 2-September 5) during the 2018 market season.
A visual evaluation of produce availability and price for selected produce items was
collected during every market. The number of times produce vendors had items for sale
(estimate of availability) and the price of those items throughout the season was
evaluated. Availability was calculated as number of vendors selling a given item (%)
multiplied by the number of markets out of the total (%) in which the item was available.
Data for the market season was used to determine what value-added products would be
the lowest cost to develop given produce availability, number of vendors selling the
item (estimated volume), and produce price.
There were over 58 produce items available throughout the market season at The Original
Rogers Farmers Market. Table 1 shows the top 10 most available produce items (squash,
zucchini, tomato, onion, cucumber, potato, bean, eggplant, okra, and pepper) at the
market based on the number of times the item was available for sale and the number
of vendors selling the item. Of the produce available, squash, zucchini, tomato,
onion, and cucumber were the top five most available produce items (over 49%).
Seasonal trends for the top five most available produce at the farmers market were
evaluated. Then this data was used to determine what weeks had the highest number
of produce vendors with the specific item, and what weeks had the lowest prices for
Table 1. Availability of various produce items for sale during the market season at
“The Original Rogers Farmer’s Market”, Rogers, AR (June 2-September 5, 2019). Availability
was based on the number of vendors and number of days at the market the item was available
for sale at the farmers market.
The percent of produce vendors at The Original Rogers Farmers Market selling the five
most available produce items by week were evaluated (Fig. 1). The peak for tomatoes
was from July 18-August 8 when more than 80% of vendors had tomatoes. All of the vendors
(100%) had tomatoes on July 18th and August 1st, 4th, and 8th. There were many weeks
where most vendors had squash and zucchini. All of the vendors (100%) had squash and
zucchini on June 6th, 9th, and 30th and July 7th, 14th and 18th. From June 23-July
18 more than 85% of vendors had squash and zucchini at every market. All of the vendor
had cucumbers on July 18th and had onions on June 6th and 9th and August 29th. From
June 20-July 7, 60-70% of vendors at the market had cucumbers; and 65-100% had cucumbers
August 8-September 5.
Fig.1. Percent of vendors selling the five most available produce items by week at
“The Original Rogers Farmer’s Market”, Rogers, AR (June 2-September 5, 2018)
The price per pound (lb) of the top five most available produce items at The Original
Rogers Farmers Market were also evaluated by week (Fig. 2). The prices of the produce
ranged from $1.87-3.20/lb. Tomatoes ranged from $2.02-2.28/lb and were at a seasonal
low from June 23-July 7 ($2.12-2.17/lb) and August 18th (2.04/lb). Squash ranged from
$2.33-3.11/lb, and Zucchini ranged from $2.21-2.94/lb. Squash and zucchini had the
lowest price on July 14th. Cucumbers ranged from $1.87-2.34/lb and were priced consistently
from June 2-July 28 at $1.87/lb. Onions ranged from $2.40-3.20/lb and were priced
consistently from June 23-July 11 at $2.40/lb.
Fig 2. Average price per pound of the five most available produce items by week at
“The Original Rogers Farmer’s Market”, Rogers, AR (June 2-September 5, 2018)
The data showed that tomato, squash, zucchini, cucumber, and onion were the most commonly
sold produce items at The Original Rogers Farmers Market and sold by the greatest
number of vendors. These produce items were most likely in surplus at the farmers
market and available for value-added food production.
The data showed the optimal time to purchase tomatoes at this farmers market in 2018
was June 23-August 4. The lowest price for tomatoes occurred from June 23- July 7
($2.12-2.17). From July 18-August 4, 80% of produce vendors sold tomatoes for a slightly
higher price ($2.17-2.28).
The optimal time to purchase squash, zucchini and cucumbers at low cost from this
market was from June 23-July 18. During this time, 85% of vendors had squash and zucchini.
Squash and zucchini had the lowest price on July 14th. Therefore, the optimal purchasing
time for these produce items at this market was from June 23-July 18 when more than
80% of produce vendors had squash and zucchini at the lowest price of the season.
Any time before August 8th, the price of cucumbers was consistently $1.87/lb, and
from June 20-July 7 there were more than 60% of produce vendors supplying the market.
Onions were priced low during late June to mid-July ($2.40). However, the largest
percent of produce vendors (80%) had onions from June 6-16 for a marginally higher
It is recommended to develop products that contain large quantities of these produce
items because of the significant discount produce vendors were willing to provide
when they had surplus. Examples of economically feasible value-added products that
could be produced from these items include tomato sauce, salsa, squash/zucchini flour,
For more information on this project, please visit:
Gramlich, M., and R.T. Threlfall. Economic Feasibility of Value-Added Production from
Farmer's Market Surplus. Arkansas Fruit Vegetable and Nut Update, Cooperative Extension
Service. October 23, 2019.
This project was funded by a Specialty Crop Block Grant from the Arkansas Agriculture
Department, USDA (AM170100XXXXG030).