Policies and rules for vendors

2014 Policies and Rules. Formatting required.

The Belmont Farmers’ Market (BFM) is a project of the

Belmont Food Collaborative, Inc., a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization

Purpose: To provide a place in the community to purchase fresh, local produce and goods directly from farmers and producers in a congenial atmosphere; to provide farmers and producers a direct market for their produce and goods; to support local agriculture and producers; to educate our community about eating healthfully; to educate residents about maintaining a healthy environment and the importance of sustainable agriculture; and to provide a social experience that helps build community and enhances the quality of life.



The northeast section of the Municipal Parking Lot adjacent to Cross Street in Belmont Center.

See our website for a map: http://www.belmontfarmersmarket.org/location-hours.html

Dates & Hours of Operation:

Thursday afternoons, June 12 through October 30.
2:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. until Labor Day.  2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. starting September 4th.



Application deadline: April 30, 2014

All vendors must:

– Submit a completed BFM Vendor Application Form.

– If required, submit a separate application and payment to the Belmont Health Department.

– Submit proof of liability insurance and sign an indemnification statement.

– Agree in a signed statement that he/she has read, understood, and agrees to abide by the Policies and Rules described in this document.

– Enclose a complete list of all products that will be sold.

– Submit a deposit to reserve a space.


Single space every week: $400             Double space every week: $800

Single space every other week: $200    Single space once a month: $100

Occasional attendance: to be discussed with BFM

If a vendor is required to have a permit from the Town of Belmont Health Department, they must obtain and pay for that permit.

Season or weekly fees, market registrations, and assigned spaces at the Market are not transferable.

There will be no reimbursement for absences from the Market.  Vendors are responsible for their own tax statements.  Fee must be paid by check or money order; cash will not be accepted.

Payment Schedule:

The initial deposit fee is due by April 30, 2014 to ensure a space.

Fifty percent of the entire season fee is due on or before June 5, 2014 in order to participate in the BFM.

The remainder is due on or before July 24, 2014, at which time the season fee must be paid in full. Vendors are responsible for making these payments on time.

The following penalties will apply:

1 to 7 days late paying required fee                  $25

8 to 14 days late paying require fee                  $50

First returned check                                         $25

Second returned check                                      $50

If fees are more than 14 days overdue or more than two checks have been returned, a vendor may be excluded from BFM participation and any previously paid fees will not be returned.


The Belmont Farmers’ Market is covered by liability insurance through the Federation of Massachusetts Farmers Markets. The policy provides coverage for the Market; however, such insurance does NOT protect the vendor. All vendors must have their own current commercial liability insurance policy to protect them while at the BFM, and must provide policy information and submit a Certificate of Insurance with their Registration Form.  Vendors may not participate in the BFM without providing such proof of current coverage, as also required by the Town of Belmont.


If a vendor is unable to attend on any given week, the vendor must notify the BFM on the Wednesday prior to the market day, preferably by noon, by emailing belmontfarmersmarket@gmail.com or calling the BFM at 857-928-8831. Vendors are responsible for ensuring that all of their market sellers are familiar with, and agree to abide by, the policies and rules in this document. We would like the owner of the business to attend in person at a minimum of once per season.


The Market will be held rain or shine and we expect vendors to attend in all weather conditions. Vendors must have tents secured from wind and provide their own protection from the elements. In the case of severe weather, the onsite Market Manager will decide if the Market will remain open.

Set-up/Clean-up and Display:

Vendors should arrive at the Market no later than 1:15 p.m. (45 minutes before the opening time) to allow sufficient time to set up. If a vendor arrives late, it is at the onsite Market Manager’s discretion where and if the vendor may set up.

Unloading in the market area must be completed by 1:45 p.m. and all vehicles that are not approved to be on-site during the Market must be moved from the lot. No moving vehicles will be allowed on the market site after 1:45 p.m.

The Town of Belmont requests that BFM vendors NOT park their vehicles in other areas of the Town’s municipal lot–the market site–during the market period.  Parking is available on residential side streets.

– Each vendor is responsible for setting up his or her displays, tables, and chairs; volunteers are sometimes available to help, but must not be counted upon for set-up.

– Displays must include vendor name and address.

– Vendors must have tents secured from wind and provide their own protection from the elements.

– Vendors are expected to keep their assigned space clean during the market.

– BFM does not provide vendor trash pick-up, water, electricity, or sanitary facilities.

– Vendors should leave their assigned space in broom-clean condition, free of debris, at BFM closing and take away all trash. 

Opening and Closing:

No products may be sold before the opening of the Market. Vendors may sell while they are breaking down at closing until one-half hour after closing; breakdown should be completed within an hour after the official closing time.


The BFM will make final determinations regarding placement based on tradition, balance, and fairness.  Consideration of an on-site vehicle will be given to vendors paying for at least two spaces.


Two types of vendors sell at the Belmont Farmers’ Market—Agricultural Product Vendors and Prepared Food Vendors.

1) Agricultural Product Vendors – sell products such as produce, plants, flowers, eggs, honey, and cider that they grow or produce themselves.

These vendors may also sell neighboring farmers’ or producers’ products as long as the products are clearly labeled with the farm name and location where it is produced and advance approval has been given – and as long as such produce or products do not exceed 1/3 of what the farmer brings to the market for the year.

 Agricultural product vendors may also sell products made by themselves with ingredients from their own farm with prior approval from the Belmont Health Department for products requiring Health Department approval.

2) Prepared Food Vendors – sell products made by the vendors.

A list of all products to be sold must be sent in with the application, or if added later, be cleared with the market management and the Health Department, if applicable.

If Health Department approval is required (see below), it must be secured before selling foods at the Market.

All vendors must provide proof of certification if labeling produce and products as “Certified Organic.”

All vendors selling processed foods, prepared foods, baked goods, poultry, meat, fish, eggs, cheese, jam/jelly, or apple cider must obtain a Seasonal Food Permit from the Town of Belmont Health Department (BHD) for $50 and provide to the BHD for approval, a list of all such goods that they intend to sell at the BFM. Vendors selling such products will be required to provide the BHD with a copy of their local permit along with a copy of their BFM application and are responsible for complying with all requirements and licenses set by local and state governments. If a vendor wishes to add a product not on their list previously approved by the BHD, they must notify the BHD and obtain approval before selling such product(s) at the Market. (Please see the 2014 Supplementary Belmont Farmers’ Market Document from the Belmont Health Department).

Removal of products: Market Managers have the right to require that a vendor remove a product(s) from their display. Causes for removal may include failure to obtain prior approval to sell the product, failure to obtain appropriate permitting or licensing, improper labeling, or inadequate signage.


All products should be top or Grade A quality; seconds or “canners” may be offered but must be labeled as such. The Market Manager of the Day has the right to ban any inferior products from the Market.  No warranty, however, express or implied is made by the Market Manager, the Market Management Committee or the Belmont Farmers’ Market as to the quality of the products sold.


Prices will be fair market value, negotiated by the vendor and the customer.  All products must have prices clearly displayed.  Produce may be sold by bunch, piece, container, or weight.  Vendors should comply with the Truth in Advertising rules, crossing out any labels on recycled bags.


Scales must be sealed and labeled by an official city or state Sealer of Weights and Measures PRIOR to setting up operations at the BFM.  The Belmont Health Department does not offer this service; they will check to make sure vendors are in compliance with this rule.

Samples and Vendor Space:

All sampling offered by vendors must meet the following criteria: Samples must be transported to the site in an approved manner and held at proper temperature until served.  All vendors giving samples must provide a waste container for use by the public.  There shall be no bare hand to food contact on samples to the public. Each vendor is responsible for maintaining his/her area in tidy and sanitary condition, and is responsible for litter resulting from samples or products sold.

Food Assistance Coupon Programs:

SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program):

The BFM accepts SNAP Benefits. The Market Manger processes the customer’s EBT card, and gives them yellow certificates to use to buy food. These certificates will have both the SNAP logo and the BFM logo on them. Each certificate must be used in full, and no change may be given. These certificates CANNOT be used for alcohol, hot foods, or seeds and plants which do NOT produce food for the household to eat. Vendors take these certificates as payment, and will be reimbursed by the Market Manager by the end of the day. Please put all of your certificates in the envelope provided by the Market Manager. This envelope will be collected at the end of the day.

WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program and the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program:

Vendors are urged to accept WIC and Senior Citizen coupons issued by the State, and to follow all associated regulations. For vendors to become part of the WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program and the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program, they must contact David Webber at 617-626-1754 or david.webber@state.ma.us to enroll. Please do not accept these certificates if you are not enrolled in the programs. Reimbursements for these coupons come directly from the state and not from the BFM.

Market Managers cannot reimburse for any coupons or certificates that do not have the BFM logo on them.

BFM Gift Certificates

BFM Gift Certificates with the BFM logo on them (color and denomination may vary) can be used to buy anything sold at the market. Vendors take these gift certificates as payment, and will be reimbursed by the Market Manager by the end of the day.

General Behavior:

No smoking.  No alcohol.  No illegal drugs.  No firearms.  No obscene or abusive language.  No physical violence.


Please call 911 immediately in case of a serious accident.  Any accident or injury occurring at the BFM must be reported immediately to the onsite Market Manager or a BFM volunteer at the BFM Manager’s tent.


All vendors must permit inspection of their farms and/or facilities to verify compliance with the Products rules (please see Products section). Farmers/vendors not in compliance will be issued warnings and expected to comply. A violation is subject to a penalty of suspension from the BFM for the remainder of the season upon a two-thirds vote of the BFM’s Market Management Committee. Vendors must comply with all applicable federal, state and local laws, ordinances, and regulations.

Cooperation is expected

BFM participants must be willing to follow the Market rules and to be willing and able to cooperate with the management and the other vendors, many of whom may be direct competitors.  Any participant who does not follow the rules, or who regularly shows an inability or unwillingness to cooperate, or is otherwise disruptive to a congenial atmosphere at the BFM, may be temporarily or permanently evicted from the Market by the onsite Market Manager, upon consultation with the other vendors and the Market Management Committee.


Market Management Committee:

The onsite Market Managers are the official managers of the Market and comprise the BFM’s Market Management Committee.  If problems arise, disputes will be settled by the onsite Market Manager upon consultation with the vendors and the Market Management Committee.  In the interest of promptness, decisions made on any questions by the onsite Market Manager in charge on a specific day shall be final.  Appeals of such decisions may be made to the Market Management Committee in writing within ten (10) days of a decision.  Upon the receipt of an appeal, the matter will be reviewed expeditiously and the Market Management Committee shall take no more than ten (10) days from receipt of the appeal to make its decision.  During this time, the vendor must adhere to the original decision of the onsite Market Manager with no right to restitution for any losses incurred.


These rules were derived from a standard set drafted by the Federation of Massachusetts Farmers Markets (FMFM), findings of Farmers’ Markets Rules, Regulations and Opportunities by Neil Hamilton, as well as the Arlington and Lexington Market rules. They are tailored to fit the unique needs of the BFM, with the intent of maintaining a secure structure in order for market vendors and shoppers to participate in the best possible fashion, helping meet the needs of both producers and consumers.


Rev. 3-2014