In search of Rap­pa­han­nock farm venues

Rappahannock News - - EDITORIAL & OPINION -

Rap­pa­han­nock County farm­ers, we need your help. For the past two years, the or­ga­niz­ing com­mit­tee of the Rap­pa­han­nock County Farm Tour & Fes­ti­val has en­deav­ored to cre­ate an event that re­flected the di­ver­sity of agri­cul­tural oper­a­tions in the county. In par­tic­u­lar, we wished to honor fam­i­lies that for gen­er­a­tions had made a liv­ing from their land. How­ever, you need to step up and be a venue on the tour.

Re­cently, the Foothills Fo­rum hosted fo­cus groups to find out the most press­ing con­cerns of dif­fer­ent seg­ments of the county’s pop­u­la­tion. One of those seg­ments was agri­cul­ture. Dur­ing a lively sev­eral-hours dis­cus­sion, farm­ers men­tioned the need for the cre­ation of new mar­kets for their prod­ucts. This was in­tri­cately tied in with their de­sire to make agri­cul­ture more prof­itable.

Per­haps par­tic­i­pat­ing in the farm tour is just what your op­er­a­tion needs. Dur­ing the tour, you have the op­por­tu­nity to welcome a public to your farm that, in many cases, is ea­ger to learn about what you are do­ing and pur­chase your prod­ucts at re­tail, not whole­sale, prices. You don’t need to hold classes, give demon­stra­tions, or cre­ate en­ter­tain­ment. You just need to be will­ing to talk to peo­ple and sell your prod­uct. Tour com­mit­tee mem­bers would be glad to help you take these ini­tial steps.

Sched­uled for Sept. 26-27, the Rap­pa­han­nock County Farm Tour & Fes­ti­val is fam­ily-friendly and free to the public. For more in­for­ma­tion and en­thu­si­as­tic sup­port, please call me at 540-937-5438, 540-219-8396, mes­sage me on Face­book or by email at wit­send­[email protected]­hoo.com. CATHIE SHIFF Wits End Farm, Amissville

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