Learn how to market your farm at expo

  • Herald Staff
  • Monday, November 18, 2013 7:32pm

EVERETT — Urban farming, product marketing and managing a greenhouse are among the topics at the 10th annual Snohomish County Focus on Farming Conference on Thursday at Comcast Arena. Hundreds of people from throughout the Northwest are expected to participate.

Keynote speaker Rod Brooks, who created the “we’re a lot like you, a little different” ad campaign for PEMCO Insurance, plans to offer advice to farmers who want to get the word out about what they grow.

Marketing their products is a topic many local farmers like to talk about, said county agriculture coordinator and conference chairwoman Linda Neunzig.

The success of the funny PEMCO ad campaign — which features people who camp in the rain, polite drivers at a four-way stop and a cold beach bum — is based on a knowledge of the people who live here. Brooks maintains the same attitude can be incorporated into advertising for Northwest farm products.

Lunchtime speaker Will Allen, a former basketball star, plans to talk about his belief that all people, regardless of their economic circumstances, should have access to fresh, safe, affordable and nutritious food. Using methods he has developed over a lifetime, Allen, who lives in Milwaukee, Wis., is the founder of Growing Power, and he trains people to become community farmers.

Those who attend the conference can pick from a list of workshops, including the business of farming, growing leafy vegetables in late and early seasons, raising livestock, nursery and greenhouse farming and products from the farm that have added value.

The conference includes a trade show.

For those who have not registered, some seats may still be available on the day of the conference. Cost is $65 at the door, which includes breakfast, lunch and a wine-and-cheese tasting. Check-in begins at 7 a.m. Thursday. More information is at www1.co.snohomish.wa.us.