Date of Graduation

Fall 2010


Master of Natural and Applied Science in Agriculture


College of Agriculture

Committee Chair

Arbindra Rimal


farmers' markets, economic impact, direct marketing, Missouri, producer characteristics

Subject Categories



Farmers' markets as a direct marketing method are growing, meeting today's demand for local, quality produce. The objective of this thesis was to determine the economic impact of farmers' markets in Missouri in terms of output and employment; characteristics of farmers' market vendors were also examined. It is expected that legislators and other interested parties will use the results to make informed decisions regarding farmers' markets in Missouri. The study's data source was a survey of 260 farmers' market producers, conducted during the 2009 seasons. The economic impact was estimated using the input-output modeling system, IMPLAN; the SPSS package was used for statistical analyses. Economic impact results indicate a total output impact of $24.35 million on the Missouri state economy including a direct impact of $14.59 million and an indirect impact of $9.76 million. Total employment impact was 379 full-time equivalent jobs, and total value added impact was $14.61 million. Producers were statistically characterized as college educated, satisfied with their business profit margin, producing on one or fewer acres, and in the growth stage of business; there was no bias as to gender. The results indicate farmers' markets are an increasingly important part of the local and state economies and may build those economies.


© Jessica Elaine Bailey

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