Written by Rachel Carter
Take 5 is a series of 12 local food sourcing and merchandising training videos for Vermont retail stores to help increase local food sales. The Farm to Plate Independent Grocers Task Force launched the Take 5 series of five-seven minute training videos for convenience, general, grocery and other retail stores as well as distributors, food hubs, and regional food organizations interested in increasing sales of Vermont products. Episode topics include promotions, purchasing, merchandising, in-store displays, signage, sampling, and procurement. Farmers and specialty food producers interested in learning more about best practices in retail merchandising may also find value in the video series.
The need for these videos was identified through research conducted by the task force in 2014 and 2015 to better understand the opportunities and barriers to selling local food at independent grocery stores, and to assess what local products stores currently carry. Retailers requested technical and marketing assistance to help increase local food sales. In response, the Take 5 videos were created to provide short and easily accessible trainings for retailers.
By helping Vermont retail stores effectively source and merchandise more local food, the Take 5 retail training video series provides retailers with technical assistance that can lead to increased local food purchases and sales at Vermont retail outlets and improved profitability in the farm and food economy. These efforts support Vermont’s Farm to Plate food system plan goals to increase local food availability, consumption, and farmer/producer viability.
The episodes are available at no charge on the Vermont Farm to Plate website at http://bit.ly/Take5RetailTraining. Annie Harlow, chair of the Farm to Plate Network Independent Retailers Task Force, serves as the project manager in collaboration with the Vermont Retail & Grocers Association, Mark Mulcahy of Rising Stars & Organic Options, and the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund. Additional support was provided by The Intervale and UVM Center for Rural Studies.
Additional Retail Resources:
- Independent Grocery Store Audit/Self Assessment
- General Merchandising Tips
- Merchandising Strategies: Using the 5 P's of Marketing
- Tips for Meeting with Local Vendors
- Tips for Building and Maintaining Efficient Relationships with Local Vendors
- Tips for Purchasing Direct from Local Vendors
- 10 Questions to Ask About Produce Display
- Produce Handling Tips
- How to Create a Successful Sampling Program
- Tips for Receiving
- How to Manage Shrink