Online farmers market to debut in Tompkins County

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Tompkins Weekly – June 21, 2010
By Katie Quinn-Jacobs

veggiesA new web-based tool will connect local farmers and buyers online.

A greener way to connect local farmers and home food preservers is on the horizon. Harvestation, an online farmers market targeting quantity buyers, will be launched this June. IthaCan, a local home food preservers network, will pilot Harvestation on its website ( thanks in part to funding from a Northeast SARE Sustainable Community Grant awarded to local software developer, Authentrics, Inc. of Ithaca, NY.

Harvestation creates a win-win situation for farmers and buyers, adding another valuable component to the local foodshed. Folks looking to can or freeze or fill their root cellars with locally produced meats and vegetables will find high quality farm products available in volume. Farmers will be able to sell on their own terms without leaving the farm. Both home food processors and farmers will save time, money – and energy.

Through Harvestation, buyers will be able to:
o shop from the comfort of their homes
o enjoy bulk discounts
o post their own wish-lists
o place orders in advance of harvest
o get to know their farmers.

Farmers will be able to:
o sell from the farm
o set their own prices, minimum quantities, and pickup times
o accept payment via PayPal
o advertise their products online
o plan according to buyers’s desires
o get to know their customers.

Harvestation will create an opportunity for farmers to link up with the growing home food processors market using web tools designed specifically for this task. Home food processors require bulk quantities of farm products in order to can, freeze, ferment, dehydrate, and root-cellar food. Harvestation, an internet widget that can be embedded on any website, will match produce growers and meat producers with food preservers and vice versa.

The advantages for farmers who subscribe to Harvestation include reducing off-field time on marketing activities, such as going to farmers’ markets, negotiating with retailers for supermarket access, and managing CSAs. Harvestation member farms will have a dedicated webpage to showcase their farms and the system will provide sales tracking reports that can be downloaded from the Internet to a home computer. It will also be Paypal compatible.

Visit the web for more information about:

To join IthaCan, the local home food preservers network, click on the “Sign Up” box at

Katie Quinn-Jacobs is a local farmer, writer, small business owner and grassroots organizer. She is an owner of Authentrics, Inc. and the founder of IthaCan.

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