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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Lori MacVittie, Elizabeth White, Joe Pruitt, Carmen Gonzalez, Liz McMillan

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BC Farmers' Markets Launches the it Feels Better at the Farmers' Market Campaign to Attract and Entice Market 'newbies'

The It Feels Better at the Farmers' Market campaign and Farmers' Market Selfie contest invite BC to explore and discover why Farmers' Markets feel so great!

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwired) -- 06/23/14 -- The BC Association of Farmers' Markets is excited to announce the launch of its BC-wide It Feels Better at the Farmers' Market campaign and Farmers' Market Selfie contest, which officially open today and run until July 21, 2014. This public awareness campaign and contest offers prizes, activities, and incentives at participating markets throughout BC to entice market 'newbies' to discover why it feels so amazing to visit the Farmers' Market.

Explains Elizabeth Quinn, Executive Director at the BC Association of Farmers' Markets:"Over the last several years, we've seen a 62% increase in the number of markets in BC. There's no doubt people are becoming increasingly passionate about buying local, in-season food and locally produced goods. With this campaign, we want to build on this growing enthusiasm in BC by reaching out to those who might not know that the markets offer much more than food- they offer an experience that feels amazing!"

Across BC, there are over 125 farmers' markets. In addition to locally grown food and locally made products, the markets offer a surprising variety of community activities such as live music, children's activities, cooking classes, artisan workshops and much more.

Says campaign spokesperson Lydia Ryall, winner of the 2014 Young Farmers of the Year Award, and co-owner of Cropthorne Farm in Ladner: "It's a joyful thing to be able to shop for food and at the same time meet the people who grow and produce what we eat. I'm thrilled to help spread the good word about our BC markets and I'll definitely be ready to pose for a farmers' market selfie with anyone who wants to visit our booth!"

Explains Moira Teevan, Community Investment Manager at Vancity and campaign supporter, "Vancity is so pleased to be supporting this campaign and the valuable work of our local farmers. The benefits of local and organic food production are huge- providing significant environmental and social benefits. As well, the markets offer a valuable community hub, where people can connect the food we eat with the people who grow it."

Says BC Agriculture Minister Norm Letnick, "British Columbians go to a farmers' market to enjoy the high quality foods produced in their communities, and for the conversations and relationships they can have with people who grow our food. Farmers' markets have a unique and festive atmosphere, and I look forward to seeing the creative ways British Columbians capture and share their experiences through this contest."

The It Feels Better at the Farmers' Market campaign - Funding support provided, in part, by the BC Government's Buy Local Program; delivered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC with funding from the BC Ministry of Agriculture and Vancity.

Here's what the It Feels Better at the Farmers' Market campaign will look like:


--  The BC-wide #FarmersMarketSelfie contest will serve as a showcase of the
    feel-good experiences people in BC are having at their farmers' markets.
--  Selfie entries can be made between June 23 until July 7. All BC
    residents 18 years of age and older are eligible to enter.
--  How to enter: Snap a photo of yourself at any BC farmers' market and
    submit it here: http://www.facebook.com/bcafm
--  Promote your selfie to get the most votes! The selfie that gets the most
    votes wins a Bernardin Home Canning Starter Kit and $500 worth of
    delicious goods from your favourite BC farmers' market.
--  Each week five random winners will be selected from five regions of BC.
    Each of these random winners will take home a Bernardin Home Canning
    Starter Kit and $50 gift card to the BC farmers' market(i) of their
    choice. ((i)Must be a member of the BC Association of Farmers' Markets.)
--  Voting will happen until July 21st.
--  Extra fun: At markets throughout BC, scavenger hunts for children will
    be available to entertain the kiddies and educate kids about where food
    is grown and what's in season.
--  The It Feels Better at the Farmers' Market campaign includes a series of
    entertaining videos, demonstrating the perilous alternatives to shopping
    at markets. Watch for these on social media!

Follow this campaign on social media:

Twitter: @BCFarmersMarket

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BCAFM

Website: http://www.bcfarmersmarket.org/

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