Sustainability of small, family farms through direct sales at Farmers Markets
Stewardship of land and community
Access to local foods for everyone, regardless of income level
In 1996, a small group of farmers was recruited for Baton Rouge’s first farmers market by Chris Campany as part of his Master’s thesis under the direction of LSU Landscape Architecture Professor Suzanne Turner. Red Stick Farmers Market was born and the first market was held in November 1996 in the parking lot of the Government building located on St. Louis Street in downtown Baton Rouge. Big River Economic and Agricultural Development Alliance (BREADA) was officially recognized as a 501 © 3 non-profit organization in the same year and began its work to increase economic opportunities for small farmers.
In 2002, BREADA was approached to relocate the farmers market to 5th and Main Streets and create a dynamic public marketplace for the downtown community. In conjunction with the Baton Rouge Area Foundation and the State of Louisiana, Main Street Market opened, serving as both an incubator for small local businesses and a gathering place for the community. Since then, we have continued to expand our outreach efforts to small farmers and our community with the addition of a mobile farmers market serving limited access neighborhoods, incentives to assist low income families increase access to fresh food, and a kids club that teaches healthy lifestyles to our youngest market shoppers.
Our mission is to build a healthy and strong local food system; to increase sustainability of independent local farmers, fishers and food producers; and to foster stewardship of land and community through public markets.