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Minnesota Farmers' Market Association 

Resources for Markets and Vendors

Back in the early 1800s, it was fairly simple - a handful of farmers got together weekly to sell the produce, eggs, meat, and milk from their gardens and farms directly to their neighbors. A few centuries later, it's a bit more complicated, with 346+ farmers' markets dotting the state of Minnesota, and several thousand food farmers, fiber farmers, food makers, craftspeople, artists, and more, gathering weekly to sell their products. There are food laws, exemptions and exclusions from food laws, sales tax on foods, insurance requirements, etc., that markets and vendors selling at markets need to know.  And through it all, farmers' markets at their core help build resilient communities by increasing Minnesota's foodshed. To assist in the thrivability of MN farmers' markets (and Minnesota communities), MFMA has compiled this list of resources to help both markets and vendors. If you don't find what you need here, please email us at with your questions.

For Vendors & Markets

For Vendors

For Markets

New! As of July 1, 2022 "THC edible products" are legal for sale in Minnesota as long as they follow the requirements in M.S. 151.72. Although called 'edible' they are not food, as defined in the new law; therefore the MN Board of Pharmacy governs the sale of these products. See these links for more information: Hemp In Food FAQs and Hemp-Derived Products.

Recommendations to markets:

  • obtain a copy of the vendor's product testing certificate to ensure legality
  • confirm with vendor their process to card and only sell to people 21 years of age or older
  • confirm with your insurance company they will cover vendors with THC edible products

MFMA Farmers' Market Quick Reference Guide. Synopsis of all the regulations market management and vendors need to know.

Cottage Foods. The 2021 amendment to the Cottage Food Law increased both food safety training as well as annual gross sales allowed under this exemption from licensing. 

Safe Food Sampling at Farmers' Markets. Since 2014, food sampling and cooking demos at farmers' markets no longer need a license as long as these food safety protocols are followed. 

SNAP EBT, PoP, WIC, etc. Many vendors benefit when markets offer any of the food access programs available in MN. These programs (except WIC) all require the markets to raise money  to fund the programs. 

General & Product Liability Insurance. MFMA's program through Advantage 1. 

Sales Tax on Foods at Farmers' Markets. It's tricky. Common knowledge says food isn't taxed in MN, except when it's "food and beverage service" AKA ready-to-eat foods. Most foods in grocery stores are not taxed - but those same foods are taxed at a farmers' market. 

Selling Minnesota Guides. Current regulations for farmer vendors selling produce, eggs, meat. Plus license needed when 'aggregating' food.

ST-19 Form. Every vendor must submit this form to their market management. The market doesn't file it with any agency, but must keep your form on file for 3.5 years.

MFMA's 265-page Farmers' Market Manual. The book on starting / growing a farmers' market.

General & Product Liability Insurance. MFMA's program through Advantage 1.

Enhanced Tax Deduction Guide for Farmers 2016 


Food Donation Federal Tax Guide 2016

Market Bucks. Administered by Hunger Solutions Minnesota, Market Bucks are a combination of state and federal tax dollars to support SNAP participants to buy directly from their local farmers and vendors. In 2022, it's a $20 match for up to a $10 purchase, totaling $30 of SNAP-eligible food and produce at participating farmers' markets. 

Obtaining a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Status

Power of Produce. Program materials provided by both the Farmers Market Coalition and the University of Minnesota Extension. As a member of MFMA, a market has free access to FMC's PoP toolkit. A farmers' market needs to raise money to fund these coupons, which have now expanded to include kids, teens, and elders.

SNAP EBT. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Electronic Benefits Transfer can be offered at any farmers' market in MN that can raise the funds to support it. SNAP, with the accompanying Market Bucks, at farmers' markets is great offering for SNAP participants and vendors selling SNAP-eligible items. 


MFMA provides services, programs, and leadership that support and promote farmers' markets across Minnesota.

Minnesota Farmers' Market Association /// 9800 155th Street East, Nerstrand MN 55053 /// 

Communications Director: Kim Guenther /// /// (573) 470-4445 

Economic Opportunities VISTA: Maeve Mallozzi-Kelly /// /// (574) 310-5553

Executive Director: Kathy Zeman /// /// (507) 664-9446 


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