The team of founders, farmers, managers and Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Mercer County’s Family & Community Health Sciences (FCHS) SNAP-Ed nutrition educators were honored with the Philip Alampi Industry Marketing Award for their contributions to the success of Trenton’s Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market (GAFM). The award was bestowed on February 5 at the Agricultural Society Luncheon at the 2020 New Jersey Agricultural Convention & Trade Show in Atlantic City. The Alampi Award, named for the former long-time New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture, is presented to a member of the agribusiness industry whose innovative ideas create or enhance new markets to increase farm sales. Rich and Debbie Norz, of Norz Hill Farm and Market in Hillsborough, which has been a farmer vendor since the market’s inception in 2015, nominated the GAFM for the award.
Market Manager, and Capital Area YMCA assistant food access program coordinator, Talitha-Koumi ‘T.K’ Oluwafemi, shared the news with Mercer SNAP-Ed program coordinators Madelyn J.C. Tannous and Alaa Al-Shujairi after the award letter from David Specca, New Jersey Agricultural Society president, was received by Samuel Frisby, executive director of the Capital Area YMCA. Oluwafemi’s email stated, “We are immensely grateful to you and the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Mercer County for being dedicated and dynamic partners with us. You help to make the GAFM stand out above all other farmers markets by enabling us to positively impact and expand the nutritional health education of the communities we serve. Thus, we would be delighted if you and another member of your team would join us in commemorating this honor. We could not do this great work without our continued collaborative partnership.”
The Mercer County SNAP-Ed Team is headed up by Joan Healy, senior program coordinator, and Michelle Brill, FCHS educator and county SNAP-Ed director.
The Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market was opened five years ago when the Trenton Healthy Food & Fitness Network and the New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids conceived the idea to turn a vacant lot into a thriving healthy community space. FCHS and SNAP-Ed have always been integral to the success of the market by providing nutrition education, cooking demonstrations and tastings.