The Sea Island Farmers Market is a year-round market that’s held every Saturday from 9:30am-1:30pm on Johns Island. It’s a great place to sell your locally grown, locally made products.
*We only allow vendor made or grown goods.*
Please note: We DO limit the number of folks selling the same / similar products at each market, as this makes for a better experience for both the sellers and buyers. We strive for a relaxed, pleasant atmosphere for vendors and customers. Our goal is to create an enjoyable experience that will keep both vendors and customers regularly returning to the market, allowing both to benefit from the community it creates.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us via email. Please note that we are also vendors with markets on Saturday and Sunday. We promise to respond as quickly as possible to any messages, however Friday through Sunday are busy times for us and may delay our response. If you do not see a response within 5 days, check your spam folder.
Please read ALL of the Rules of the Market.
If you feel that the terms are agreeable, send us an email and we will get started on adding you to the SIFM family.
If you do not see a response within 5 days, check your spam folder.
Sea Island Farmers Market | Market Rules and Regulations A note about the rules - It is not our intent to burden the vendors, but to ensure the smooth operation of the market for all. Our goal is to create an enjoyable experience that will keep both vendors and customers regularly returning to the market, allowing all of us to benefit from the community it creates.
Attendance: We are a rain or shine market - weather is too unreliable to cancel every time they call for rain. Please have a plan to protect your products if it rains during a market. Our customers are steady and reliable - they will be there even if it rains. We very rarely cancel.
Vendors should only commit to the schedule they can keep. We have several options for schedules: weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, and random. Talk to us before committing. We require at least 2 weeks notice for planned absences. If you sign up for another event, get a wedding invite, etc., send us an email right away - even if it is months in the future. This market is historically driven by local, regular customers and they like consistency. So, be there when you are supposed to be there and let us know when you can’t.
Unscheduled Absences: As vendors ourselves, we know life happens. All we ask is that you please be courteous and let us know as soon as you know. If possible, let us know by Thursday morning so we can take you off the posted vendor list (customers really do check the list weekly). Absences without adequate notice will result in being removed from the vendor list.
Opening Time: 9:30am. All Vehicles in the market area must be parked in your assigned space by 9:30. If you’re running late, get in touch with us on the market phone, and we’ll guide you in safely. Remember, running over customers is generally very bad for business.
Closing Time: 1:30pm. No vehicles in the market area until after the market has closed. All Vendors must leave their tent up (tables if no tent) until 1:30 when we ring the bell. As vendors, we know it is hard to sit and not have a lot of customers towards the end of the market. Feel free to pack up your non-essential stuff and generally tidy up as the market winds down. You can’t sell it if it’s not there. So it’s good business practice, for you and your neighboring vendors, to keep your signs up and product out until we close. If a customer comes towards closing and the vendors have everything packed up and the market looks like a ghost town, they’ll stop coming. If you sell out: put up a note, leave your table and your sign up, and wander around bragging about it. Be insufferable, you earned it. If there is an emergency, please let us know and we will help you leave safely.
The Rent: All retail spaces are $30 per market and Food Trucks are $35 per market. Vendors are provided an empty space, and that’s all. You are responsible for bringing whatever else you need to do business including, but not limited to: tables, chairs, tents, stakes/weights, gloves, inspected scales, signage, change, rubber chickens, etc. There is no electricity available. Your space is 10 x 10 ft plus room for 1 vehicle. You will need to keep your display area within these boundaries. This includes front signage. No more than 1/2 of your A frame sign should protrude into the walkway. Do not block your neighbors. Special requirements will be handled on a case by case basis, talk to us. Vendors will maintain a clean and orderly area. Please clean up your space when you leave. Pack out your trash (empty boxes, etc.).
Umbrellas and tents may only be used if anchored and/or weighted in such a manner to prevent blowing around in a strong wind. We recommend weights, although stakes are acceptable. Whatever method you choose, all covers should be secured at every market. You will be responsible for any damages caused by your tent if it is not secured. More importantly, don’t injure someone and/or lose a $50-300 investment due to a lack of a couple of bucks in precaution. You do not have to use a tent.
Signs: All vendors must have a signage that includes, at minimum, your business name and prices (items can be priced individually). List your products and prices clearly - customers are more likely to buy if they know up front how much stuff costs. Good signs help customers find you.
Sales/Products: The Sea Island Farmers Market is a producers market.
Farmers: A market farmer’s primary source should be crops they are growing themselves. No resale farming will be allowed except by specific, advance permission. You can sell limited additional produce from other local farmers you are affiliated with, but it must be clearly labeled as such, including the farm name and location (i.e.“Muskrat Farms on James Island”).
Crafters /prepared food vendors: This market is for selling things that you have made. No resale of commercially made items, or items made by other people. Please check with us before bringing new items that are outside your application description (i.e. if you make bread and want to start bringing candles). All “new” items require approval - this is to keep the vendor type varied and attractive to customers . Food Trucks/Mobile food vendors: Must have documentation of compliance with DHEC/SCDA regulations and are are responsible for all insurance, equipment, and materials required to operate correctly and legally.
The Obvious, but must be said: Vendors should dress and act appropriately for doing business in a family friendly environment. Aggressive sales (particularly hollering at people or hawking) are prohibited. Please be nice. We can’t make you like your neighbors, but we can expect you to be able to fake it convincingly. Absolutely no rude or aggressive behavior will be tolerated from anyone, vendors or otherwise. It’s silly to have to write this, but any physical threats from a vendor will result in their immediate expulsion from the Market with no refund of fees. If you have an issue with anyone, contact the market supervisor.
Since the Sea Island Farmers Market takes place on property leased to us by Charleston Collegiate School, we have agreed to extend their campus policies to the market. No smoking. No alcohol. No illegal drugs. No firearms. Service animals are welcome. Well behaved pets are allowed on property but must be leashed, under control, and cleaned up after properly.
Some Official Legal-type Stuff (aka: keeping “The Man” happy)
Required Licenses: Charleston COUNTY Business License - Super easy to get, the folks in the office are very helpful and will walk you through everything. You can get one online at charlestoncounty.org SC Dept. of Revenue Retail License from SC Department of Revenue Office.
Note: we are NOT in the City Limits.
SC retail License: Also very easy to get, go to https://dor.sc.gov/tax/registration and follow the steps.
Insurance: Vendors must carry premises and product liability insurance specific to SIFM with policy limits not less than one million dollars, and provide proof to SIFM. We have to require this so the Market can be insured. We have some links if you need help finding good, affordable insurance.
All Vendors using an oven, burner, heating device, etc must have a working fire extinguisher at their designated space per St. Johns Fire District.
Only legal scales with state permit stickers are allowed to calculate sales by weight. Vendors without legal scales must sell by the piece or per quantity. If you wish to sell produce by weight, but do not have a legal scale, consider weighing and packaging items at home, but sell 'by the bag' or 'by the package".
Vendors selling Cottage Law approved products prepared in a non-regulated, non-inspected kitchen must have be sure they are eligible for this option. DO NOT assume that your product is covered by this exemption. Contact DHEC if you have any questions.
Vendors selling items produced in a regulated kitchen must have their license at every Market. All food items (except produce and eligible baked goods) must be prepared in a licensed kitchen. This includes, but is not limited to: salsa, sandwiches, enchiladas, etc. If you are selling canned goods, you must have your approved HACCP.
Neither Sea Island Farmers Market (SIFM), its market managers/representatives, or Charleston Collegiate School shall be held responsible for any loss through theft, damage, or otherwise, of products or any private property while at Sea Island Farmers Market. It is the vendor's responsibility to keep all necessary licenses, documentation, proofs and permits updated and on hand at the market each week. Further, it is the vendor’s responsibility to correctly and safely operate their business and maintain their area. SIFM, its market managers/representatives, or Charleston Collegiate School are not responsible for a vendor's lack of coverage or documentation, and are not liable for any damages, injuries, issues or penalties that arise from vendor's products or booth set up. The Legalese Finale (we promise) In consideration for receiving permission to participate in the Sea Island Farmers Market, I hereby RELEASE, WAIVE, DISCHARGE AND COVENANT NOT TO SUE the owners of Sea Island Farmers Market or Charleston Collegiate School, their officers, agents, servants, or employees (hereinafter referred to as RELEASEES) from any and all liability, claims, demands, actions and causes of action whatsoever arising out of or related to any loss, damage, or injury, including death, that may be sustained by me, or any of the property belonging to me, WHETHER CAUSED BY THE NEGLIGENCE OF THE RELEASEES, or otherwise, while participating in such activity, or while in, on or upon the premises where the activity is being conducted.