Market Buds

Children’s Program

Market Buds aims to provide a fun opportunity for children to engage in the local food system.

We do this through conversations directly with farmers, educational and cooking activities, tastings, gardening, exercise classes as well as arts and crafts.

In addition to participating in weekly activities, Market Bud participants receive tokens to spend at the market, allowing them to make their own shopping decisions. The Alberta Farmers’ Market Association (AFMA) provides a set of over 20 tools, guides and templates to help communities engage younger customers in the farmers’ market experience through the Market Buds Children’s Program. AFMA member markets interested in running their own Market Buds program have access to the following tools and more:

  • Market Buds Activity Guide featuring over 20 children’s activities to do at the market and planning tools.
  • Market Bud Token Template, order tokens for children to use to shop at the market’s participating vendors. Markets are responsible for reimbursing participating vendors.
  • Tools and templates for promoting Market Buds Children’s Program, including social media graphics, fliers and signage.
  • Market Buds Passport. Each Market Bud participant gets a Market Bud Passport to track participation.
  • Prizes for kids participating in Market Buds Children’s Program. Stickers, temporary tattoos, tote bags and other goodies will be available for purchase.
  • A Market Bud Children’s Program Facebook Group. Connect with other Market Buds Children’s Program organizers to discuss programming, and share ideas!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to purchase all the supplies?

No! Please feel free to order any of the supplies you would like to use separately there is no need to order everything

How much do supplies cost?

Sample Market Buds Supplies Price List

  • 100 tokens $40.00
  • 50 bags $160.00
  • 1 guide $30.00
  • 1 stamp $60.00 (7.5 cm x 4 cm, designed to stamp finished activity)
  • 10 vendor signs $90.00
  • 1 banner $75.00
  • 100 passports $40.00

Total $495.00
*This is a sample price list. Prices vary with quantity ordered and shipping costs.

Where can I find volunteers?

  • schools, most high schools have work experience programs
  • universities, faculties of education or health & nutrition (students like volunteering it looks good on their resumes!)
  • community groups such as sororities, girl guides, 4-H clubs
  • retired or new teachers, Alberta Teachers’ Association
  • parents, playgroups, preschools
  • post volunteer positions on your social media
My market doesn’t have the funding for the program where can I find sponsors?


City or town Grants, Agriculture Organizations, Chamber of Commerce, Banks, Dentists, Insurance Agencies, Home/Garden stores, Local Health Organizations, Growers Councils, Master Preservers/Gardeners, Local Extension Groups, Vendors, Millers or producers, YMCA, 4-H, Scouts / Girl Guides, Co-ops, Preschools, MOMS Clubs, Art programs such as 4-Cats art studios, Local Library, Health clubs / gyms, Local Restaurants, Chefs, Lions clubs

My market already has a children’s program can we use the name Market Buds and use the activities?

Yes!! We would like to use the name as a branding tool. As long as you are a member and have a children’s program you may use the name Market Buds and we are happy to share our activity ideas! Please let us know you are using the name so that we can help you advertise!

Can my market only do the activities and not the tokens or vice versa?


Yes!! We recognize that different markets have different needs. The program is meant to be flexible to meet the needs of your market. Please use whatever will work best for your market.

Does my market have to use all of the activities?

No, the program is flexible please use what works best for your market. The activity book is just a starting point. Feel free to add any activities you think are suitable. We also have a Facebook group to share ideas.

Do I have to host the program at every market?

No, your market can host the program as often as you wish. Some markets may choose to have the market buds only once a month to save on costs or you may choose to have it every week, or every other week. The frequency is entirely your choice.

Become A Member

By joining our association, you join a community of over 100 farmers’ markets with thousands of vendors in Alberta. Your market or vendor business will immediately benefit from our advocacy, marketing and promotions, training programs, workshops and networking opportunities, huge resource library, group discounts, and our farmers’ market insurance program. Scroll down to see the many benefits of AFMA membership!