“(T)hat’s another legacy relationship that we have, industry has, with HEB, because Hightower and the staff really put a lot of energy into making it happen. We did a lot of behind the scenes work that nobody saw but it did make it happen. HEB did a lot of promotions, still do a lot of promotion. They have a big effort now called, Pick of Texas, which they identify a lot of their value-added stuff that comes from Texas. They have a contest around the state now, they promote Primo Picks. That’s the legacy out of what we did with Hightower with HEB to promote Texas grown stuff.”
Robert Maggiani was part of TDA’s direct marketing staff. Their focus was twofold: farmers markets (direct to consumer sales), and grower coops (direct farmer to retailer sales, without having to go through a wholesaler). Farmers would come together and do their own wholesaling and keep more of the dollar in their own pockets. Robert now works for the National Center for Appropriate Technology, NCAT. They provide assistance with the same direct marketing techniques done under Hightower at TDA. Technical assistance on issues such as: How do you access the market? How do you make Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) work,? and How do you do your bookkeeping?