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Oct 22

Cottage Food Laws Making Profits From Your Kitchen

If you search for a baking forum, several will pop up showcasing discussions about women worldwide using their home-based kitchens to bake cakes, cookies, pies, cupcakes, breads and more, all in an effort to make extra income and show-off their culinary talents. In 2002, Warren Brown, moonlighted as a cake baker, eventually leaving his job as a Washington DC lawyer to take his deliciously amazing cakes to the masses two bakeries. Today Brown has seven locations across Maryland, Virginia and the nations capitol.

Everyone knows someone who can create a delicious cake or pie; In fact, if you stroll through any community farmer’s market you will see folks selling their homemade baked goods, apple butter or heirloom candy? The ability to sell a food specialty is made possible in most United States (U.S.) communities by the existence of “cottage food laws;” a special law giving home food processors permission to make potentially non hazardous food products from the home kitchen. In the U.S., cottage food laws are different for every state so home food processor’s must check with their individual state regulatory agency to learn about specific food processing rules and food labeling requirements; while all other states may require the use of a licensed commercial kitchen.

Today eleven states currently have house bills pending, and the residents are hopeful these cottage food laws will pass bringing that much needed shot in the arm to their local economies. There is really no way of knowing how many home-based bakers and small food processors there are across America, however one thing is for certain, today the consumers desire for homemade, clean label foods with no preservatives opens the door for all food entrepreneurs ready and willing to become essential commodities in their community.

The list of states below have cottage food law legislation pending:

Arizona
HB2103 – 501R – I

Arkansas
The newest state to pass a cottage food law

Maryland

South Dakota
South Dakota Bill (HB1240)

Washington State

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