Selling Products at a Farmers' Market

Overview

Are you a farmer or producer selling products at Farmers’ Markets, Farm Stands, and Mobile Markets? Could you economically benefit from participation in any of the nutrition programs sponsored by the Department? Here’s is some information about available programs:

  • Farmers' Market Nutrition Program: The purpose of the New York State Farmers' Market Nutrition Programs (FMNP) is to promote local farmers by expanding their sales at farmers' markets and farm stands, and to foster healthy communities through the consumption of locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables. FMNP does this through the promotion of fresh, unprocessed fruits and vegetables grown by local farmers so they may expand their sales through New York State farmers’ markets and farm stands.
  • FreshConnect Checks: The FreshConnect Checks Program was designed to increase the purchasing power of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) consumers while supporting local farmers, farmers’ markets, farm stands, and mobile markets.
  • NYS Wireless EBT: This program allows farmers and market coordinators to become authorized vendors in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (formerly Food Stamps), allowing SNAP participants greater access to fresh, locally produced food items.

Apply to the Farmers' Market Nutrition Program

The Farmers' Market Nutrition Programs (FMNP) promote fresh, unprocessed fruits and vegetables grown by local farmers so they may expand their sales through New York State farmers’ markets and farm stands. FMNP also promotes nutrition improvement for families enrolled in WIC and low-income seniors by eating more fresh, local fruits and vegetables. The program is intended to encourage economic development in communities through the promotion and expansion of farmers' markets and farm stands in New York State.

Farmers and farmers' markets must apply to participate in this program, so that consumers participating in the WIC and Senior programs can use their benefits. Consumers who are eligible for these programs are provided with coupons to use for local fruits and vegetables at participating farmers' markets, farm stands, and mobile markets in NYS.  Find participating markets in New York State.

FMNP Eligible Food Items

Examples of what you can buy using FMNP benefits with authorized vendors include locally grown, fresh fruits, vegetables, and culinary herbs. Examples of eligible items include (but are not limited to) the following: berries, stone fruits, apples, salad greens, peppers, tomatoes, garlic, potatoes, squashes, basil, thyme, rosemary, etc.

Examples of what you CANNOT buy using FMNP benefits include exotic and imported produce, prepared foods, and baked goods. Examples of ineligible items include (but are not limited to) the following: Florida oranges, avocados from Mexico, sandwiches, jams and jellies, stews, hot meals, breads, pies, cookies, etc.

Farmer Application 

Farmers interested in applying to the FMNP need to apply each year before accepting any FMNP coupons at a farmers' market, farm stand, or mobile market.

Before you apply, please read the Rules and Procedures for Farmers (FMC-5). This document is also available in Spanish.

A complete application for the program must include:

  1. FMNP Farmer Participation Agreement (FMC-6). This document is also available in Spanish.
  2. Completed training

These application documents must be submitted and farmers must be authorized on a yearly basis.

Download the full application package in English and in Spanish.

 
Additional Required Forms

Farmers participating in FMNP must also fill out a Crop Plan (FMC-12) each year. This document is also available in Spanish. This form must be provided to every market manager where FMNP coupons are accepted, every year.

Farmers who operate a Farm Stand in the FMNP must also apply as a market each year.

 

Training

All farmers participating in the FMNP must meet an annual training requirement set by the Department.

New farmers must undergo a formal training offered by the Department or a market manager/sponsor using the Farmers' Market Nutrition Program training materials provided by the Department with submitted documentation. Learn more about our training options, register now for one of our upcoming training webinars, or take a pre-recorded webinar here.

Returning farmers meet the training requirement by reading the Rules and Procedures for Farmers (FMC-5) and by submitting a signed Farmer Participation Agreement (FMC-6).

Coupon Redemption

Farmers’ Markets Nutrition Program Coupons must be mailed, along with the Universal Redemption form, to:

Farmers' Market Federation of New York

109 Twin Oaks Drive, Suites U2-4

Syracuse, New York 13206

Apply to the FreshConnect Checks Program

FreshConnect Checks Program benefits can be accepted by producers who sell SNAP eligible food items at any farmers' market, farm stand, or mobile market in New York State. The FreshConnect Checks Program partners with farmers’ markets that operate a central SNAP terminal.  Find participating markets here.

The FreshConnect Checks Program drives revenue to farmers or vendors in the form of paper coupons and can be utilized to create a new customer base, help expand access to fresh food in underserved communities, improve the diet of individuals in those communities, and foster economic development.

FreshConnect Checks Eligible Food Items

Examples of what you can buy using FCC benefits include (but are not limited to) SNAP eligible food items such as fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, eggs, honey, breads and cereals, snack foods and non-alcoholic beverages for the household, and seeds and plants which produce food for household consumption.

Examples of what you CANNOT buy using FCC benefits include (but are not limited to) the following: beer, wine, liquor, cigarettes and tobacco, foods that are hot at the point of sale, vitamins, medicines, and supplements, and any nonfood items such as pet food or hygiene products.

Participating in FreshConnect

If you are a farmer or vendor interested in participating in the FreshConnect Checks Program, you must first:

  • Take a pre-recorded training webinar. This webinar is roughly 30 minutes long and involves a voluntary survey at the end. Those who wish to receive email confirmation of the training must take the survey;
  • Familiarize yourself with the rules and procedures for farmers and vendors participating in the FreshConnect program; and
  • Request a FreshConnect Checks sign from the manager of your farmers' market, or from the Department. 
 
Check Redemption

FreshConnect Checks must be mailed, along with the Universal Redemption form, to:

Farmers' Market Federation of New York

109 Twin Oaks Drive, Suites U2-4

Syracuse, New York 13206

NYS Wireless EBT Program

Through this program, New York State supports farmers and farmers’ markets accepting SNAP benefits by providing equipment and reimbursements. The Department will reimburse farmers and farmers’ markets for fees associated with running a SNAP terminal. In partnership with the Farmers Market Federation of New York, farmers can sign up to accept SNAP EBT and receive reimbursement for mobile app technology, associated EBT fees, and Bluetooth card readers.

This program allows farmers and market coordinators to become authorized vendors in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (formerly Food Stamps). This equips them to accept SNAP benefits using an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card reader in exchange for eligible SNAP food items. 

Who Qualifies?
  • Farmers who direct market at NYS farmers markets or farm stands, or any other means of direct-to-consumer sales EXCEPT online markets. 
  • Farmers Markets
Who Does Not Qualify?
  • Non-farmers
  • Food Hubs

Farmers who are interested in learning more about how they can accept SNAP should reach out to the Federation or start by attending the SNAP webinar found here.

FMNP Related Documents

FreshConnect Related Documents

Contact the Nutrition Unit

For assistance translating web pages into different languages, please visit ny.gov/website-language-translations

Contact us by phone:

Contact us by email:

Mailing Address:

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets
Farmers' Market Team
10B Airline Drive
Albany, NY 12235

Contact us by fax:

(518) 457-8398