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Market Wagon Brings The Farmer’s Market To Your Front Door

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In 2022, finding a business that hasn’t yet been converted into a phone app can be difficult. It’s the ultimate endgame for a vast majority of industries. Like how the dot-com boom of the 2000s made a website a crucial aspect of doing business, smartphones, and built-in app marketplaces mean entrepreneurs have a new way to connect with customers. 

Video game companies suddenly created mobile gaming divisions, and clothing companies rushed to port their online marketplaces into easily-scrollable formats. Taxi companies quickly found themselves pushed aside by one-tap transportation startups like Uber and Lyft. 

The “app-ification” trend has now come for a business that many had thought was technology-proof: the farmer’s market.

Unprecedented access to information has given the public a greater average knowledge of health-related topics. The importance of regularly consuming fresh, natural-grown food is beginning to permeate pop culture. 

Thanks to a bit of ingenuity and a lot of hard work by founder Nick Carter, this growing community of health-interested individuals can get their farm-fresh fix anytime, anywhere, all at the tips of their fingers. Called Market Wagon, the online retailer of fresh-sourced food is poised to shake up the industry for good. 

Photo Courtesy Market Wagon

Founded in Indianapolis, IN, in 2016, Market Wagon is home to thousands of independent vendors, often selling their wares out of small family operations in 19 states. However, years ago, it sprouted as a last-ditch idea for Carter to revitalize his farm. 

“It’s a business of passion,” said Carter of the industry. “So, in order to save the family farm, we had to create an online marketplace.”

During any technological explosion, a group of people is often hesitant to adapt. While affordability and access to technology are some of the biggest factors, human interaction is an aspect of the experience. 

Many people prefer the face-to-face engagement of traditional markets to an app. There is also a feeling that the once-a-week format is more of an “event” to casual consumers and that there isn’t the same attraction without the rows of sun-spotted tents and live music every Saturday morning. 

Carter hopes that Market Wagon’s convenience and 24/7 access, in addition to a flat delivery fee of $6.95 per order, is more than enough to offset the loss of that part of the customer base. 

The app’s development can also be seen as a technological inevitability for an industry that is constantly changing. “The thing is, technology is always advancing, and farmers have used new technology to innovate, and this is no different,” he says

According to Carter, there are plenty of reasons for farmers to begin establishing a presence on the app. One of the main advantages is increased access to new and potential customers. Especially in an era of consolidation in the food supply—where large producers are selling to grocers directly—a way to reach people without relying on word-of-mouth is crucial for a family farm’s long-term viability. 

“If the grocery industry could wave a magic wand and have one vendor that brings them all their eggs from the entire nation, they would,” says Carter. “So we just needed to create a better, faster way for those farmers to be able to get in contact with the consumers, and the consumers to get in contact with the farmers and for us to be able to facilitate that transaction.” 


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