Farmer’s Market Vendor Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I contact the farmers market?

Go to our website at www.bearspawlions.com or, by contacting us by e-mail at farmersmarket@bearspawlions.com or, least preferred, by leaving a message at (403) 239-0201.

What are the market days and hours of operation?

The market runs from the first Sunday in June to the first Sunday in October between the hours of 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM.

As a vendor, how early do I need to show up for the market?

Your vehicle must be off the pedestrian walkway by 9:30 AM. Vehicles will not be allowed into the market area after 9:30 AM. Give yourself plenty of time to be fully set up prior to the opening time of 10:00 AM.

What is the difference between a Farmers Market and a Flea Market?

The Bearspaw Lions Farmers Market is, of course, a Farmers Market, not a Flea Market – flea markets have few if any restrictions on who can sell what. To be an Alberta Approved Farmers Market the market must comply with provincial guidelines. Alberta Approved Farmers Markets are administered by Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. For more information on what these guidelines are, go to www.alberta.ca and in the Search field enter “farmers market”. You’ll see a list of documents outlining where the markets are, the guidelines and other useful information.

We are also a member of the Alberta Farmers Market Association (AFMA). They have a lot of useful information on their web site (see “Useful Links” below) for market managers and vendors. AFMA can also help you get a website up and running for a reduced price if you are a member.

What kind of products can I sell at your market?

Farmers market vendors must primarily be Alberta-based people who ‘make it, bake it or grow it’. At least 80% of the vendors at a farmers market must fall into that category. The other 20% can be vendors who buy and resell commercial products like clothing, health and body care, Tupperware, Norwex, Watkins and other similar products or out-of-province vendors. We restrict our market to no more than one vendor for each of these types of products.

We have a quota on the number of jewelry vendors allowed at the market, and it’s full. One of the categories that is often problematic in determining whether a vendor falls in the 20% bracket is jewelry. Stringing beads on some wire does not, in our minds, constitute “making” jewelry. However if you are a trained artist, a silver or goldsmith and have original and unique products then you most likely are in the 80% group. Otherwise you will fall in the 20% group and we are likely already at our quota.

Who needs a Health Certificate?

Alberta Approved Farmers Markets are identified in the Alberta Public Health Act Food Regulation. Food vendors must have a current Alberta Health Certificate. You must be able to produce it on demand. We are regularly visited by Alberta health inspectors who ensure the proper regulations for displaying and serving food are followed. Having said that, certain types of food do not require a Health Certificate. Contact Alberta Health Services to make sure.

Why are animals not allowed at the market?

Alberta Health does not allow animals around or near where food is being sold.

As a vendor, do I need liability insurance?

You don’t absolutely need liability insurance but it is generally recommended that you get your own coverage in case someone trips over part of your display or is injured by something of yours blowing in the wind, etc. and because of the common practice of suing everyone remotely connected to the event. Your personal insurance carrier can probably accommodate you or you can get it through the AFMA. If you do get coverage have the Lions Club of Bearspaw as “co-insured”.

Where do I get an application form to be a vendor?

The easiest way is off the web site. Wait until early January to get the latest version. See “How do I contact the farmers market” above.

Do I need to fill out an application form every year if I’m a regular vendor at the market?

Yes, because details change over time and your product(s) might have changed as well. We must be informed if that happens.

When do I need to pay my vendor fees?

If you are new to the market as a pre-booked vendor do not pay until you have been confirmed by the market committee. If you are a returning pre-booked vendor send the payment with your application. If you are a returning full-time vendor you will be invoiced early in the new year. If you are a Day vendor then you must pay each day you attend prior to setting up in the morning.

How do I know how much stalls/tables cost?

The pricing is updated on our web site in early January of each year. See “How do I contact the farmers market” above.

What is provided to vendors renting a table/stall?

Inside (Hall) vendors are provided a chair and a table (8’ x 2 ½’). Outside vendors must provide their own seating, product displays and weather protection. The outside stalls are 12’ (W) x 20’ (L) Please note: wind gusts can be very sudden and strong so tents/awnings etc. must be securely supported/tied down.

Useful Links:

Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development: http://www.agric.gov.ab.ca/app21/rtw/index.jsp
Alberta Farmers Market Association (AFMA): http://www.albertamarkets.com
Alberta Health Services: http://www.albertahealthservices.ca
2003 Guide to Food Labeling and Advertising: http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/fssa/labeti/guide/toce.shtml
Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency: http://www.alma.alberta.ca

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