Two non-profit groups are hoping to start winter farmers markets in Iowa. Tony Ends is the director of the Wisconsin-based “Churches’ Center for Land and People,” and he says the market idea is based on a program started to help needy farmers. Ends says part of the proceeds from the winter markets would go to help needy farm families. While summer farmers markets have caught on, many farmers don’t have a place to sell their products in the fall and winter. Ends says churches would play a role and they will try to work with the churches to have them provide fellowship halls for the farmers markets, and also to hold the benefit sales for farmers in need. Ends they held some trial markets in Wisconsin, and hope to spread the concept to Iowa and eventually Illinois. He says it’s very much in the beginning stages as they’ve put out the word they’re looking for churches to host the sales and farmers to take part. Ends says they’re looking for farmers who have products that meet certain standards. He says they have to be licensed products that’re processed according to state and federal standards. He says farmers have to provide their own liability insurance. Ends group has teamed up with the group Harvest of Hope to sponsor the program. For more information, contact Ends at 608-748-4411.
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