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Home > Food from Farm to Table > Business, Economics & Agricultural Marketing > Farmers' Market

Farmers' Market

A farmers' market is an association or group of local farmers who assemble at a defined public location for the purpose of selling their agricultural products directly to consumers

A preference for fresh, ripe, and high quality produce grown in a local community is what drives the market. Furthermore, the open air market and friendly atmosphere is where consumers can increase growers' awareness of consumer preferences, which creates an opportunity to create new marketing and sales techniques.

Consumers benefit from good, natural selection and knowing where their product came from. Small farmers and producers benefit because they are not competing with the large commercial farms selling to large corporations. The farmers' market benefits the grower, consumer, and community by providing a niche market that meets the individual needs of the consumer and grower.

In order to start a farmers' market, it is necessary to secure a site, recruit farmers willing to participate, as well as obtain permits, licensing, and contracts. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture assists in starting a market for direct marketing purposes. Moreover, MDA helps organize structure, oversees food safety issues, and holds conferences and seminars to share strategies.

Our goal is to benefit both farmers and consumers by bridging the gap between consumers' demand for locally grown produce and farmers' need for better prices and new marketing outlets.


Division Contacts:

  • Farmers' Market Development & Nutrition Programs:  651-201-6012
  • Food Guidelines & Regulations for Farmers Markets:  651-201-6027
  • Pesticide Applicator License:  651-201-6006
  • Plant Protection Nursery License:  651-201-6095
  • Minnesota Grown Directory & Logo Information:  651-201-6170
  • Organic Information:  651-201-6134
  • Cottage Food Law:  651-201-6081
  • Value Added & Other Grants:  651-201-6500

MDA Contact

Ruth White

Ag Marketing & Development Division