Our first farmers market opened in 1983 at the Marin Civic Center in San Rafael on Thursday mornings. It was the first Certified Farmers Market in Marin County, soon followed by our Sunday Marin Civic Center Farmers Market – now the third largest farmers market in California. In 1987, Marin Farmers Markets (MFM), then Marin County Farmers Market Association, was established as a non-profit organization for the mutual benefit of the farmers and consumers. As the demand for farmers markets grew in the 1990’s, MFM began facilitating farmers markets in neighboring communities throughout the North Bay and East Bay. In 2006, MFM gained its 501(c)(5) non-profit status with the IRS as an agricultural membership organization.
Marin Agricultural Institute (MAI) was founded in 2004 by MFM as a 501(c)(3) sister organization to further the public benefit goals of MFM. These goals included the creation of a permanent home for MFM’s markets in Central Marin and the expansion of education and advocacy programs related to food and agriculture in partnership with other local organizations.
In 2009, MFM members voted to merge MFM and MAI into one 501(c)(3) public benefit organization, Agricultural Institute of Marin, as of January 1st, 2010. The marriage of MFM and MAI will enable our organization to more effectively serve the family farmers, specialty food purveyors, artisans, and communities we represent. We look forward to growing with you all!