Saturday, May 16, 2020

Bloomingdale Farmers Market new rules in detail (required reading)

From: Robin Shuster
Sent: Saturday, May 16, 2020 8:37 AM
Subject: BFM -- the new rules in detail

Dear BFM fans:

This is long but please read it so you are prepared for a different market.
We are reopening Sunday the 17th under the new farmers markets rules. We are dedicated to keeping you and the producers and our community safe and healthy so that BFM can continue to operate and you can come to market.
So here is how we do it.  We have a new market layout.
This will be a restricted market: with a new layout and a lot of new rules.  There is ONE controlled entrance now.  To enter the market there is a controlled waiting line. Prospective shoppers form a waiting line with 6 foot spacing on yellow dots westbound on the North side of Florida Avenue to Second St NW where it will turn North along Second St. It will then turn onto Randolph.
Entrance/Exit: The entrance to the market is located on the NORTH side of R St  at the WEST end at the crosswalk with Florida Avenue.  Customers flow into the market one way eastbound along R Street. At this point they have two choices.  They may follow the ONE WAY loop and head one way West to shop with the producers on the South side of R until they reach an exit located at the West end of the market at the South part of the crosswalk.  Or they exit the market to First Street or continue across the street to the Unit block of R NW.
Monitors will  prevent reentering and remind customers that the flow is one way only in the market enclosure and that they cannot “double back.”  There will be signs and sanitation stations at both the exits and entrance. You may NOT leave the market by going under the tape
Access:  Note that the entire length of the market will be divided by Do Not Cross caution tapes to enforce the one way loop and to prevent any crossing or zigzagging.   The market will also be enclosed behind the tents by additional lines of Do Not Cross tape running the length of the North side of R Street and the South side of R Street. They will be attached to trees and cones. No one will be allowed to enter the market except at the one entrance. You must leave the market by one of the two exits.
There are hand sanitizing stations, one at the entrance and one at the exit of the enclosed market. Please use them.
Access Signage with rules will be at the Entrance and both Exits
Stalls will be set with spacing tables and other precautions to minimize contacts with staff and bagged food. Products will be preordered or prebagged by producers or picked and packed by the producers for the customer at the stand.  Customers will not be allowed to touch any product.  Producers will have limited items on display as visual aids only.  

Limits to people in the market at one time: there will be limited access of only 22 people at any time in the market and only ONE PERSON per household. You MUST wear facial covering. Keep your visit simple & short.  No pets are allowed now in the market and please keep the children home and encourage vulnerable seniors to stay home as well.   
"Grab and Go” is the new motto in DC farmers markets. Alas, we have to discourage all lingering and socializing.  Besides the usual market staff, we have volunteers who will be helping you and the customers adjust to the new system and remind everyone to keep social distance from other customers and the producers.  (And if you want to volunteer, email Ted and me below).
Customers and Producers must STAY HOME if they are sick or have any symptoms or have been exposed to the virus

The market staff is ensuring that the producers follow the best hygiene guidance: wear masks, follow glove protocol and sanitize and frequently disinfect surfaces and cc machines  and keep social distance.
  • ENTRANCE: The sole entrance is on the North Side of R Street at the West End Crosswalk with Florida Avenue.
  • Customers will be limited to 22 people at a time in the market, no more than 2 people at a stand, 6 feet apart.
  • Each tent is separated by 10 feet 
  • Customer flow is ONE WAY only and there is no doubling back.  You can follow the one way loop through the market.
  • Customers are not allowed inside the tents and they may not touch the products.
  • Prospective Customers will wait in a line on the North Side of Florida Avenue leading to Second Street,  6 feet apart --on the yellow dots.
  • Market staff and volunteers will monitor the lines and answer questions and help the customers.
  • Disinfectant for Customers: Please use the sanitizer stations and read the signs at the entrance and exit
  • MASKS/FACE COVERINGS are mandatory in the market and on line. 
  • Please shop solo — only 1 person shopping per household
  • No pets
  • Leave children, seniors and vulnerable family members at home
  • No sampling, no on-site food preparation, and no eating (no noshing) at the market
  • Please use credit cards not cash.  If you must use cash, transact with exact bills and change.
  • While you are shopping, please do not put your purchases or bags or belongings on ANY of the stands or market tables anywhere in the market.  
How the Producers are keeping you safe:
  • Producers and staff cannot come to market if they are sick or have been exposed.
  • Producers have to wear masks/face coverings, wear gloves, use glove protocol, bring and use hand sanitizer and sanitize table and credit card machine sanitizers frequently.
  • Market Management will ensure that all sanitation protocol is enforced.  We stay up to date with all CDC and DC communications and take all recommended precautions.  
  • The market tables have to be made of plastic or the table has to be covered with plastic/vinyl so that it can be sanitized frequently.
  • Market tents are 10 feet apart and set up with tables facing outward as a barrier to anyone entering and to keep the 6 foot distance 
  • Customers are not allowed inside the tents.
  • Producers keep all products behind them in the tent so they cannot be touched
  • Producers post large, clearly viewable signs of produce options/prices for customers that can be seen at least 6 feet away
  • How to Shop in a contactless way:
    • We prioritize prepaid and pre order for pickup at the producers stands.  Most producers have created an online, email or phone system to allow customers to pre-order AND pre-pay with market pickup.   
    • Second best is prebagged items at fixed price points at the stand
    • Third best is producer packed product that customers ask for at the stand

  • CHECK OUT: Producers are limiting customer interaction.  They request that you use cards not cash.  If you must use cash, pay with exact bills and exact change.  
  • Producers are reducing contact with customers at checkout by: 
  • Touchless payments and actions
  • Or when not possible, 
    • They may turn off signature requirements and allow customers to insert/swipe their own cards if possible. 
    • Manually enter customers’ credit card information
    • Producers must wipe down screens, card readers and the checkout space with disinfectant after each customer.
.  We really appreciate your understanding and cooperation as we work to keep everyone safe and healthy at the market and in our community.

Please check our facebook  (@BloomingdaleFarmersMarket) and twitter (@BloomingdaleFM) and instagram (bloomingdale.farmersmarket) for updates.  

Robin and Ted and Ted and the volunteers.

PS If you want to volunteer, please email me at or  and
Ted is at 

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