In 2004, the Certified Farmers' Market Advisory Committee came up with a plan that proposed an increase of up to $5. Scott Beylik, a farmer in Fillmore who chaired the group's finance subcommittee, said that "managers and producers shot the plan down."
The 2004 plan also proposed that small farms that earn less than $5,000 at a market yearly would pay lower fees.
For large vendors, which can earn that amount in a single market, and who already pay 5% to 10% of sales to market managers, an additional $4 or $5 fee seems a minor imposition; even for an average farm, which might sell $400 at a market, it would amount to only 1% of sales.
Ultimately, of course, it is the shopper who foots the bill. Few customers are eager to pay more money or burden farmers, but the time may well have come that the alternative — allowing cheaters to continue to flourish — seems even more distasteful.