Webinar: The Cooperative Advantage of Marketing Local Farm-Raised Seafood

Peggy Fogarty from Keystone Development Center (KDC) will present a free webinar and case study on aquaculture cooperatives during March 29th at 12:00 pm eastern during the next edition of the Aquaculture Webinar Series co-produced and funded by the North Central Regional Aquaculture Center, the United States Aquaculture Society, and the National Aquaculture Association.

Webinar Topic: New Jersey Shellfish growers were seeking ways for cooperatively expanding their markets. The farmers recognize that to increase their on-farm income, they need to increase the volume of what they produce, eliminate losses due to the perishable nature of food, minimize transportation and packaging expenses, and receive the highest price for what they sell. To do all this is nearly impossible for a single farm operation, but by collectively pooling their resources and efforts through the cooperative, they potentially can accomplish their goals.

Community Supported Agriculture farms, food cooperatives and chefs, all show they are eager to support the development of these shellfish cooperatives and that their customers are enthusiastic about adding local shellfish and other varieties of local seafood to their diet. Connecting to shellfish farmers expands the range of food products and meal choices for customers. Cultivating the direct-marketing channel brings the local product directly to the eater in a convenient retail or restaurant setting. These new marketing channels could potentially help farmers extract the “local and environmental sustainability premium” by assisting them to organize among themselves to lower per farm transportation and marketing costs.

Barriers and logistics still need to be worked through including renting a facility, establishing a distribution system, forming relationships with other farmers to increase their product mix, and the development of administrative systems including website, marketing, invoicing and accounting systems. By having more control over their business, they can break away from the lack of transparency and commitment they currently struggle with in their wholesale market options.

Presenter: Peggy Fogarty is the Executive Director for the Keystone Development Center (KDC).  The Center has a mission to sustain communities, economies, and resources through cooperatively-owned businesses. They provide technical and research assistance to groups who wish to organize as cooperatives.  Through these efforts they strive to meet the economic and business development needs of rural and non-rural areas in the multi-state area of Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey and Delaware.

Time/Date: Thursday, March 29, 2018 12:00 PM Eastern.

For additional information and to register, please click on: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_hrDplQKsQ4mvv2bnyXETgg

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