Announcing Forward Dane and New Order
- On May 18, Public Health Madison & Dane County released Forward Dane, a plan for the phased reopening of Dane County. Forward Dane includes metrics we will use to guide our gradual reopening of Dane County and lays out what requirements will be in place during each reopening phase.
- On June 12, we also issued a new order. See our Current Order page for more information.
- Review DATCP Guidance for Farmers Market Vendors and Consumers
Like grocery stores, farmers markets and farm and produce stands are allowed to operate per the Safer at Home order as long as these requirements are met:
- No seating (indoors or outdoors)
- No food consumption on premise (indoors or outdoors)
- No self-service operations, including food sampling
- Customer self-dispensing of unpackaged food is discouraged
Farmers' Market Manager Information
The Market Manager has an important role in assuring food safety and public safety, and is responsible for identifying and resolving potential public health concerns before and during the market. This season the Market Manager responsibilities are even greater with the need to oversee physical distancing and adhering to the Orders to prevent the spread COVID-19.
To begin this process, we are asking for the following:
- Review UW Extension COVID-19 Strategies for Farmers Market.
- Contact your municipality’s streets and/or parks units for proper permitting and requesting for additional space to promote physical distancing.
- Complete and submit the Farmer’s Market COVID-19 Operational Plan explaining the additional steps for complying with physical distancing.
- Complete and submit Vendor List.
- Submit Farmers Market COVID 19 operational plan and vendor list via email 4 days prior to the opening of the market.
The above process will continue as long as our COVID-19 response efforts within our community are in effect. We look forward to collaborating with you and supporting our local farmers’ market vendors and supporting practices to keep our community safe. We will notify you when we have received your application, and may contact you to discuss additional precautionary measures. Thanks for your cooperation.
Social Distancing and Other Best Practices
Maintain customers in lines to meet social distancing requirements of six feet between people. This can be accomplished by using chalk or painters tape to mark 6 feet on pavement. Vendor booths should also be positioned at least 6 feet apart, more if customers are congregating on sides of booth or using empty space as a walkway.
To minimize the likelihood of repeated hand contact with produce, farmers market vendors should consider decreasing the amount of products displayed for sale and re-stock items more frequently. Be sure to regularly clean and sanitize all containers used to store produce.
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has signs that are great for posting at your stand
Personal Hygiene Requirements
- Wash hands with soap and water for at least 15-20 seconds as frequently as possible or use hand sanitizer. After handling money, hands shall also be washed; or, have one person designated to handle money only.
- Regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces
- No shaking hands
- Follow all other public health recommendations issued by Wisconsin Department of Health Services.
Displaying and Packaging Items
Customer self-dispensing of unpackaged fresh fruits, vegetables and other produce is discouraged but allowed. For additional preventative measures, vendors are encouraged to prepackage items in advance for ease of delivery to customers. Consider decreasing the amount of products displayed for sale and re-stock items more frequently as an additional precautionary measure.
Be sure to regularly clean and sanitize all containers used to store produce. Displaying a sign recommending that all produce should be washed or peeled prior to consumption is also advised. Consider pre-packaging produce (e.g., one pound bags of asparagus, a bag of lettuce) to prevent customer bare hand contact. Pre-packaging also helps to speed up delivery to customers and promote social distancing.
Refer to Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection guidance for Selling Unpackaged Produce During Emergency Order.
- According to CDC, money is not likely a primary mode of transmission of COVID-19, however, it may be possible to transfer the virus by touching a contaminated surface and then touching the mouth, nose, or eyes.
- Customers and workers must wash their hands often throughout the day, including after handling money, and always before and after they eat or touch their eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Vendors should keep hand sanitizer, or handwashing station, readily available for employees to use if they will be handling money. If a card reader, tablet or some other form of payment is being used, sanitize equipment frequently.
Reusable bags are discouraged as an additional level of precaution. If customers are using their own bags, they should not be placed on produce or retail tables. Likewise, retailers should not place any items in those bags, only the customer should contact the bag. If customer bags come in contact with retail area, these areas should be sanitized immediately. The reuse of plastic grocery bags by retailers is strongly discouraged.