Farmers Markets: A Special Food Topic

Farmers markets have become increasingly popular across the country and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports a continuing growth and demand for these markets. The same popularity has been observed in Massachusetts. Along with their rising popularity, there has been an increase in the variety of products sold.

In Massachusetts, according to retail food regulation 105 CMR 590.000: State Sanitary Code: Chapter X –  Minimum Sanitation Standards for Food Establishments, produce stands that only offer whole, uncut fresh fruits and vegetables are exempt from the definition of food establishment. Farmers markets that sell other food items are considered a food establishment and must comply with the regulation.

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