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Farmers markets are held regularly throughout Montana with support from MDA and others

Farmer's markets play a valuable role in promoting healthy communities in Montana. While shoppers enjoy the freshness and taste of locally grown foods, and vendors capture more of the value of their products from direct sales to their customers, money is circulated through the local economy.

Use the tabs below for additional resources for farmer's market managers and vendors. For additional assistance, contact us.

See below for the interactive map or download the Montana Farmer's Market Directory.

There are also great market listings available on the Montana Department of Commerce VisitMT.com site and the Abundant Montana Directory. If you are interested in starting a market, refer to Starting a Farmers' Market in Montana, a guidebook from NCAT, AERO and USDA. If you manage a market or are a market vendor, find more resources on the Farmers Market Manager Portal from the Department of Agriculture.


2020 Season


Montana Farmer's Market Map

 

Want to Find a Farmer's Market?

Click Here for the
Abundant Montana Directory

 

Want to Start a Farmer's Market?

Click Here for the
Start a Farmers' Market in Montana Guide

 

Manage a Farmer's Market?

Click Here for the
Farmers Market Portal

 


Farmer's Market Facts

Growth of Montana Farmers Markets.

Direct marketing of farm products through farmer's markets continues to be an important sales outlet for agricultural producers nationwide. Farmer's markets, now an integral part in the urban/farm linkage, have continued to rise in popularity, mostly due to the growing consumer interest in obtaining fresh products directly from the farm. The number of farmer's markets nationally grows every year, and this growth clearly indicates that farmer's markets are meeting the needs of a growing number of farmer's with small- to medium-sized operations.

Number of Montana farmer's markets: 71

Estimated 2013 revenue at Montana farmer's markets: $1.8 million

Who benefits from Farmer's Markets?

  • Small farm operators: Those with less than $250,000 in annual receipts who work and manage their own operations meet this definition (94 percent of all farms).
  • Farmers and consumers: Farmers have direct access to markets to supplement farm income. Consumers have access to locally grown, farm-fresh produce and the opportunity to personally interact with the farmer who grows the produce.
  • The community: Many urban communities where fresh, nutritious foods are scarce gain easy access to food. Farmer's markets also help to promote nutrition education, wholesome eating habits, and better food preparation, as well as boosting the community's economy.

More National Farmer's Markets Facts


Farmer's Market Frequently Asked Questions

A: Potentially hazardous foods require licensing before selling at farmers markets. These foods include cut melon, raw seed sprouts, garlic in oil preserves, a food of animal origin that is raw or heated, and a food of plant origin that is heat-treated. Contact your local county sanitarian for more information on licensing requirements.

A: In general, vendors do not need a special license if they are selling raw and unprocessed farm products such as fruits and vegetables, baked goods, or fruit preserves. To learn more about health and safety regulations applying to farmer's markets, contact your county sanitarian.

A: Any products that include processing of the vegetables (canning, cooking, preserving, peeling, dicing, cutting, etc.) must be approved through the county sanitarian and licensed by the State Health Department before being sold to the public.

A: Baked goods that are NOT potentially hazardous foods subject to spoilage (breads, pastries, cookies, etc.) may be sold at farmer's markets without a license. Baked goods that require refrigeration (cream pies, cream filled pastries, cheesecakes, custard pies, etc.) are considered potentially hazardous and may NOT be sold at farmer's markets. With any questions, contact your county sanitarian.

A: Meat sellers who have processed their meat in a state inspected facility must then apply to the county sanitarian for a retail meat market license. Additional licensing may be required by the Montana Department of Livestock's Meat & Poultry Inspection Bureau depending on the situation, (406) 444-5202

A: Eggs are required to be kept under refrigeration at 45 degrees or cooler, and cannot be sold in reused cartons. Vendors are encouraged to contact their county sanitarian and the Montana Department of Livestock's Milk & Egg Inspection Bureau, (406) 444-2043.

A: A license is not required to sell fruit or berry jams, jellies, compotes, fruit butters, fruit syrups, marmalades, or similar products at farmer's markets. With any questions, contact your county sanitarian.

A: To claim products as "organic," the products must have been grown and handled according to national organic standards. Most operations' products must be "certified" organic before organic claims can be made. Contact the Montana Department of Agriculture's Organic Certification Program with questions, (406) 444-3730.

A: If vendors are selling products by weight, the scales used must be licensed and inspected annually by the Bureau of Weights & Measures, (406) 841-2240.

 

Farmers Market News

MT Dept. of Agriculture Requesting Specialty Crop Block Grant Applications

Over $3 million in funding available for Montana agriculture

MT Dept. of Agriculture Requesting Specialty Crop Block Grant Applications

The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) is now accepting applications for an estimated $3 million in federal funding available through the Specialty Crop Block Grant (SCBG) program.

The purpose of the SCBG program is to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops in Montana. Specialty crops include fruits and vegetables, peas, and lentils, dried fruits, as well as horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture. State and/or local organizations, government entities, producer associations, academia, community-based organizations, nonprofit organizations, and other specialty crop stakeholders are eligible to apply either as single entities or in combined efforts.

Grant proposals are due to the Montana Department of Agriculture by 2:00 p.m. February 19, 2021. Technical assistance calls will be held on January 30 and February 18, 2021.  For more information, visit agr.mt.gov/SpecialtyCropGrantProgram or contact Grace Aklestad, Specialty Crop Block Grant Program Manager, at (406) 444-3407 or email scbg@mt.gov.

Documents to download

Grown in Montana Holiday Gift Guide is Now Available

16 Grown in MT companies featured in Grown in Montana Holiday Gift Guide

Grown in Montana Holiday Gift Guide is Now Available

The Montana Department of Agriculture recognizes that supporting Montana food and agriculture businesses by shopping local is more important now than ever before. To connect holiday shoppers with Grown in Montana products, our marketing staff has compiled a list of 16 Montana companies offering a variety of gift items.

Click here to view the Grown in Montana Holiday Gift Guide.

Documents to download

Tourism Grant Program Now Accepting Applications

2021 Tourism Grant Program application cycle open from October 12 - November 30, 2020

Tourism Grant Program Now Accepting Applications

The application cycle for Tourism Grants is now open. The 2021 application cycle will accept applications from eligible entities from October 15 - November 30, 2020.

The Tourism Grant Program funds projects that strengthen Montana’s economy through the development and enhancement of Montana’s tourism and recreation industry. A total of $750,000 is available for projects that develop and enhance tourism and recreation products that have the potential to increase non-resident visitation.

Click here to learn more or to apply for a grant.

Charsi Workman
Marketing Officer

Phone : (406) 444-5425
Fax : (406) 444-9442
E-mail : farmersmarkets@mt.gov
302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Farmers Market Files

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