You are here: Internet and Farmer's Market

Internet/Farmer's Market

Internet Sales:

When beginning a new small business, the internet seems like the perfect place to start. However, it is important to note that many states require pet food and specialty pet food registration and/or distributor licensure before offering distribution into that state. 

The word "distribute" means to offer for sale, sell, exchange, or barter, commercial feed: or to supply, furnish, or otherwise provide commercial feed to a contract feeder.  Therefore, shipping product into a state in response to an internet purchase constitutes "distribution".

It is prudent for internet retailers to determine and comply with the registration and/or licensure requirements of each state in which they intend to distribute product prior to shipment into that state.

Farmer's Market/Green Grocer:

The definition of distribution includes the selling or giving away of home-made pet treats and foods at farmers markets and other fairs, fund-raising events and at coffee kiosks and banks.

If you are planning to use pet treats or food items for fund-raising or to give away, please check with your state regulations regarding the registration or licensing of pet food/treat distributors and producers.

Many farmers markets are now aware that these items require state approval before distribution, but many probably do not.


The information contained in this website is designed to provide advice to small petfood and treat manufacturers on regulatory requirements and to assist them in the development of proper labeling for these products.

AAFCO has no statutory authority to regulate pet products.

Rather, enforcement of violations is the purview of the state feed control officials, so companies must comply with each state's requirements.  While most states follow AAFCO model regulations, exact language and interpretation may differ between states. While these documents offer guidance that are helpful in the vast majority of states, it is the responsibility of the manufacturer to ensure compliance with individual state requirements.

Did you know?

AAFCO does not regulate, test, approve or certify pet foods in any way.

AAFCO establishes the nutritional standards for complete and balanced pet foods, and it is the pet food company's responsibility to formulate their products according to the appropriate AAFCO standard.

It is the state feed control official's responsibility in regulating pet food to ensure that the laws and rules established for the protection of companion animals and their custodians are complied with so that only unadulterated, correctly and uniformly labeled pet food products are distributed in the marketplace and a structure for orderly commerce.