Farmers Markets

The City of Nashua Environmental Health Department licenses and inspects food vendors at Farmers Markets.

If you are food vendor planning on participating at a Farmers Market, you will need to submit a completed farmers market vendor application along with a $50 application fee. An additional $25 expedite fee will be applied for applications received less than 2 weeks prior to the planned start date. Applications received less than 1 week prior to planned start date will be denied.

An Environmental Health Specialist is available to answer any questions regarding a Farmers Market by calling our main office at 603-589-4530.

A farmers market as defined in NH RSA 21:340a(V)  means an event or series of events at which 2 or more vendors of agricultural commodities gather for purposes of offering for sale such commodities to the public.  As a result, there are restrictions to what is allowed to be sold or distributed at a farmers market.  Please refer to our Farmers Market Food Safety Guide for what food items require a license, which items are exempt, and which items are restricted.   

Farmers Markets, along with other events selling food products, present a unique challenge to food safety as the food is served, and sometimes prepared, outside the controlled environment of a commercially licensed kitchen. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that each year 1 in 6 people get sick, 128,000 will be hospitalized, and 3,000 people will die from a foodborne illness.

Public Health Tips

  • Food handlers’ hands, consumers’ hands, and insects are major sources of potential food contamination. Contamination can occur during an exchange of money and then offering a sample to the next customer. Also, viruses, such as flu, can live on surfaces such as money for days to weeks! Proper handwashing between transactions and food handling will limit spread.
  • There are nine major food allergens that account for nearly 90% of all food-allergy reactions: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, wheat, sesame, and soy. This can be avoided with clear and proper labeling.
  • Salmonella bacteria are the pathogen of concern for shell eggs. Keeping eggs refrigerated inhibits the growth of Salmonella to higher numbers. Therefore, eggs should remain refrigerated until used.
  • Under ideal conditions, bacterial numbers in food can double every 20 minutes! This is why ensuring food remains at proper temperature is essential. Keeping meats, poultry, and fish at 41F or below is required to restrict bacterial growth.
  • Pathogens of concern in raw dairy include Campylobacter, Listeria, Salmonella, and E. coli. Listeria is of particular note due to its ability to grow at refrigeration temperatures and its dangers to pregnant women and their unborn children. As Nashua adopts the 2017 Food Code, raw milk and raw milk products are prohibited from sale under section 3-202.14.  

Farmers Markets Application Forms 

Farmers Market Guidance