A. The Farmers’ Market consists of local small growers of vegetables and other related agricultural products; local producers of “added value” items such as baked goods, pickles, preserves, etc.; local people involved in catching, processing and distributing Maine seafood products; local crafts people; and any other category deemedacceptable to the voting membership.
B. It is recognized that although members sell as individuals, the market is a cohesive unit- its success depends on the cooperation and joint effort of all the vendors as a whole.
C. Members must make, grow, or catch all the products they sell at the Market site.
II. ACCEPTABLE PRODUCTS
A. Products for sale at the Belfast Farmers’ Market must be in compliance with the guidelines of the Association. The Market was established as an outlet for local Maine agriculture and related products, and to help promote small-scale agriculture and rural enterprise.
1. Craft items offered for sale must be made by the vendor, or a family member. All craft items must be of good quality and should be clearly marked with the makers’ name.
2. All produce and agricultural products must have been grown or produced by the vendor or a family member. Items purchased for resale are strictly forbidden.
3. Fresh produce must be grown by the vendor or family member. A high standard of freshness is required. Produce should be picked as close to Market time as possible and handled in such a way as to preserve the fresh quality until Market opens, and throughout Market hours.
III. MARKET MANAGER
A. The officers will appoint a Market Manager for each Market day.
B. The Market Manager will make any on-site decisions relating to market management when need arises, in the absence of the Association officers. Any such decisions are subject to review by the officers in a timely manner, and/ or by appeal to the voting membership.
IV. MARKET SITE
A. The Market(s) will be conducted at such site(s), upon such days and at such hours as decided by the voting members at the Annual Meeting.
B. The Market will be conspicuously identified by a neat, legible sign place at the Market site(s), subject to approval of the property owner.
C. Layout of the Market stalls will be determined by joint agreement of the membership and the property owners.
D. Customer parking will be clearly designated by conspicuous signs and arranged in insure safety and Market visibility. Parking arrangement are subject to approval by a vote of the current voting membership.
E. Rent, if any, will be negotiated annually with the property owner or his agent by designated representatives of the Association, subject to approval by a vote of the current voting membership.
F. Vendors must post their name and farm location at their stall each market day.
G. Vendors must leave the Market site by time agreed to with the property owner.
V. STALL ALLOCATION
A. Number and size of stalls available at Market site(s) will be determined by the association officers based on site size and topography.
B. A daily stall fee will be charged to Market participants; payment entitles vendors to sell at Market on the day in which the fee is collected.
1. Stall fees will be set annually by a vote taken at the Annual Meeting. These fees will be used to defray the costs associated with the Market site and operations, e.g. advertising and publicity, insurance, rent, etc.
2. Stall fees will be collected and recorded each Market day by the Treasurer, or by a member designated by the Treasurer, and deposited in the general funds of the Association by the Treasurer.
C. Stalls at the Market site will be occupied by paid up members on a daily first-come-first-served basis, or by any other means determined by a majority of the voting membership.
D. Disputes over stall spaces shall be heard and settled by the officers and the Market Manager; all such decisions are subject to appeal, to be settled by a vote of the current voting membership.
VI. MARKET OPERATION
A. Knowledge of and compliance with all state regulations regarding the production, labeling, display and sale of all products at the Belfast Farmers’ Market is the responsibility of the individual vendor.
1. Sales tax must be collected as required by Maine State law. Maine’s sales and use tax law requires tax collection on non-edibles such as crafts. It is the responsibility of each vendor to obtain their own tax numbers, and be familiar with which of their items are taxable, and to collect such taxes and forward them to the State Treasurer.
2. Processors of homemade foods such as pickles, baked goods etc. must comply with Chapter 345 of the Department of Agriculture requirements and assume responsibility for licensing, inspection, etc.
3. Eggs, fish, meat, and dairy products must be handled in a manner acceptable to state regulations, e.g. product must be kept in a cooler or on ice or under refrigeration.
4. Department of Agriculture law requires that fresh produce must be displayed at least 6 inches off the floor.
5. All produce sold by weight must be weighed for the customer at the Market site. Only scales carrying current certification by the Department of Weights and Measures will be allowed, in compliance with State of Maine law.
6. Vendors engaged in growing and selling plants of all kinds must obtain a license from the Maine State Department of Agriculture.
B. Prices should be displayed clearly, either by use of a price list or with individual signs for each product.
C. Each vendor selling at the Market will have a good understanding and knowledge of his product, its handling etc.
VII. APPEARANCE AND CONDUCT
A. Vendors will be neat, suitably dressed, and deal with the public in a courteous and appropriate manner.
B. All vendors will display their products neatly and attractively, with consideration for the other vendors and the general public.
C. Vendors are responsible for their own stalls, and will supply all necessary trash containers, and will leave their site clean and in a condition suitable to the Market Master and property owner.
D. The Belfast Farmers’ Market prohibits vendors from bringing animals to the market site.
E. Hawking and false advertising is forbidden.
VII. APPLICATION PROCEDURE
A. Applications shall include full name(s), address, and contact information.
B. Applications shall include primary and secondary products with rough estimate of quantity.
C. Applications shall include intended days and season of attendance.
D. Applications shall include all present and prior membership in Farmers’ Markets.
E. Applications shall include at least two references.