What to Expect from Farmers Market Inspection
If you are selling only whole produce, the inspector will check to make sure the produce is up off the floor and in good condition.
If you are selling only your own farm raised eggs, with a small egg packer's certificate from the Department of Agriculture, the inspector will ask to see your certificate. The inspector will check the eggs for proper temperature, and may check to see that they are properly graded and labeled, and in new containers.
A TCS Food is one that requires refrigeration to prevent the growth of pathogens (bacteria).
If you are selling processed non-TCS foods such as canned salsas, jellies, breads, or other value-added products that do not need refrigeration, the inspector will ask to see your state health department license. This will be either the mobile retail license or seasonal license, or, if you have processed the product yourself, your processor/manufacturer's license. The inspector will check the labeling on your products and the condition of the packaging, and the food itself. If selling your own honey, check here to see if you qualify for a license exemption under the Oklahoma Honey Sales Act.
If you are selling a processed TCS product, the inspector will ask to see your license(s). Please have available a mobile retail license, and be prepared to answer questions about the source of the product. If the product is properly labeled, the product source information will be on the label, and will normally suffice for the inspector. However, the inspector may still ask to see a processor's license or some confirmation from the Department of Agriculture that the facility where the product was processed is an inspected/approved facility. The inspector will ask to be shown the refrigeration unit where the food is kept, to check temperatures and to look at the product and the labeling.
- If you are selling a combination of any of the above categories, the inspection should be a combination of the things listed in those applicable categories above.
- Having your license(s) available will significantly reduce inspection time, and will allow you to continue to serve your customers with very little interruption, if any. Having them laminated and/or in a clear plastic sleeve hanging from your table or tent is a great way to ensure that they're readily available, for quick inspection.
- If sampling (requires prior approval), samples should be kept on ice if TCS. They should be kept in a closed container, and any serving utensils must be single-use only. Should be pre-portioned unless can be easily separated using a gloved hand at the market (such as a piece of bread torn by hand) without the risk of attracting insects. Samples should not be set out for customer self-service. Approved handwashing facilities must be available.
If you have any questions about licensing or other requirements, please contact the Program Coordinator