Privilege and exclusion at the farmers market: findings from a survey of shoppers
Research consistently shows the typical farmers market shopper is a white, affluent, well-educated woman. While some research to date examining farmers markets discusses the exclusionary aspects of farmers markets, little has expounded on this portrait of the typical shopper. As a result of this neglect, the potential of farmers markets to be an inclusive, sustainable development tool remains hindered. This study seeks to better understand this typical shopper by drawing upon anti-consumerism literature to examine the motivations of these shoppers. Findings from a survey of 390 shoppers in a predominately Hispanic community are discussed. Results from the survey indicate that even in a community in which white, non-Hispanics are the minority, the farmers market shopper is likely to be a white, non-Hispanic female who is more affluent and well educated than the average community member. Theoretical implications and suggestions for those working in community development are discussed. Suggestions for future research are also provided.