University of Maryland Extension

Urban advantages

Ginger S. Myers, Extension Specialist, Marketing, University of Maryland Extension and Kim Rush Lynch, Extension Educator, University of Maryland Extension

Urban Ag home | Table of contents

Urban Ag home | Table of contents
Figure 1: What makes your tomatoes different from all the other tomatoes your customers could buy? Photo by Edwin Remsberg, © University of Maryland—AGNR Image Library

A good marketing plan begins with a firm grasp on the benefits and attributes of your product. For example; you’re not just selling tomatoes. You’re selling local, vine ripened tomatoes (features) that are days fresher and more nutritionally dense (benefits) than tomatoes from the grocery store. For customers such as chefs, food truck vendors, or specialty food producers, urban grown products are miles fresher, support the B2B (Business to Business) community model and can help them differentiate their food items from their competition.

Food that is grown and consumed in the city contributes to the food security of urban populations. In times of abundance, this is often minimized. But in times of natural or man-made disasters, it can help fill the supply void. While urban production may seem small, urban farmers can maximize their production potential per square foot more so than their rural neighbors. Small plots can be micro-managed for fertilization and water applications to maximize yields.

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Marketing challenges and opportunities
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