How to get around cottage food laws [ Can You Legally Sell Food out of your House ] (2023)


How to get around cottage food laws [ Can You Legally Sell Food out of your House ]

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How to get around cottage food laws welcome to cottage food laws youtube channel.

This is the premier food entrepreneur channel for those who are looking to create a home-based food business we are going to have tons of great content on our channel, so definitely hit the subscribe button.

We're gonna have every single state and all kinds of fantastic links and guides to help you get to your food business.

Now this is a great question and it's not something that I'm going to get into that's going to be illegal.

I'm actually going to give you some options as to how to get around cottage food laws, even though every single state does have them.

Many of them are restrictive in many ways, but there are some ways that you can actually create and develop a food business from home, even though some of those products that you can make are restrictive, the amount of money that you can make are restrictive and so on.

So let's dive right into it.

Let's not waste any time.

First off.

The first question is: how exactly can you get around cottage food loss? Now.

Do not take this as advice that I would say you need to go against any type of state's cottage food laws that are set in place, but number one you can start off in a basement or a garage now damian isn't that kind of similar to having a cottage food business at home? Well, technically, no because there are many states that will allow you to actually utilize those spaces.

If you turn them into commercial kitchens which doesn't have to be a fortune, you don't have to spend a million dollars to do this, but in some states I know for this example in georgia.

If you have a basement, you can create a separate kitchen in that basement and you can actually get a business license, incorporate yourself get inspected by the department of agriculture and you can sell products through a commercially licensed styled business.

This is nothing to do with your kitchen in your home, but it is one way that you can actually get around cottage.

Food laws is by having a basement that is open and available and utilizing the plumbing to make sure you've got a three compartment, sink mop, sink hand sink, and then you need to use commercial grade equipment such as tables and mixers and cooling trays, et cetera, et cetera, but the idea of getting around cottage food laws in one state, for instance like georgia, for as an example, you can utilize an actual basement as long as it is considered a separate kitchen, one that is not being used for your daily uh food production or food, making up in your kitchen in your home, where there's kids there's animals and such it has to be a separate room or a separate, dedicated space in the home.

That's one number two a garage now.

Obviously, a basement garage are two totally different things in some states.

You can actually take a garage turn it into a commercial kitchen as long as it's a separate kitchen again back to the separate kitchen idea, and you can get it licensed to allow you to sell online when you get a commercially licensed commercial kitchen up and running.

That gives you the opportunity to sell online and ship online because your business is not taking place inside of the actual home kitchen.

It is taking place in a separate licensed area of the home.

Okay option number three: how to get around cottage food laws? Okay, so if you've got the space on your property, some states will allow you to actually build out a separate kitchen.

So it's not! You could even rejuvenating an old barn as long as it's up to code and you follow the accounting, the city as far as the uh upkeep of it, and you are going to be remodeling it you got to make sure you follow those rules and regulations on a local level, but you can turn a old space like that, a barn or even just build a space from scratch.

As long as you follow the department of agriculture's guidelines having the right amount of sinks, the hand sinks, the mop sinks, etc, getting it inspected and getting it signed off, which may include also a local fire department may come in and inspect it just to make sure you've got adequate exits and it is a fire safe, a business license for the city and county that you're working in and then, of course, all of the usda department of agriculture's requirements for the build out making sure that you follow the guidelines.

That is a third way that you can actually get around cottage food laws: okay, on your own property, utilizing your own home or your own space.

Okay, now, of course, number four: if you want to get around cottage food laws- and you don't want to be restricted by it, then just rent a commercial kitchen, but at that point, you're actually transitioning from the idea of a cottage food business from home into a commercially licensed kitchen, where you're going to just simply rent the space, make the product that you're going to make and ship and sell it.


Now, to keep this in mind for you to actually quote unquote get around these cottage food laws.

Check with your also check with your homeowners association, be sure that you're not in any way shape or form violating any of the bylaws of your home or association, because believe it or not.

Some homer associations will not allow you to do any of this.

Even if the city and county says hey thumbs up damian, you can go ahead and do this you've got the space.

You can go ahead and build out your kitchen, but the home association says: look you can't build.

You can't actually operate a business from home, at least not in the neighborhood.

So these are some things you need to keep in mind, but they are legally ways that you can get around in cottage food laws and develop your business and have a business.

So that's really quick, short and sweet and to the point, there's a four different ways that you can actually have your food business started and get around it and allow you the opportunity to sell to restaurants to retail stores, because the type of license that you have you could dictate who and where and how much when it comes to free businesses.

So if you have any questions about this, let us know down below and if it's your first video for cottage foods laws, let us know, give a big thumbs up and hit the subscribe button.

We're gonna have tons of content to help you get a food business started specifically from home.



How do I sell food from home legally in California? ›

To operate a home-based food business in California, you must complete a California Department of Public Health food processor course within three months of obtaining your cottage food permit. After you complete the course, hold onto the food handler card or certificate as proof that you completed the training.

Can I cook at home and sell? ›

A home based cooking business can come in many forms – you might make specialty food products and sell them online, or you could be a caterer or a personal chef. Home-based food businesses can be a hobby for a bit of extra income or the start of a much larger business.

Can I sell cottage food online in California? ›

California has two classes of cottage food operations (CFOs): Class A & Class B. Class A CFOs can sell their products directly (in-person) and online. They can also ship their products and use a third-party delivery service (like Postmates).

How much does a cottage food license cost in California? ›

The fees for July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022 are: Application Fee ---------------- $54. Annual Fee for Class A ------ $42. Annual Fee for Class B ------ $158.

How much is a food permit in California? ›

There is no charge for a seller's permit, but security deposits are sometimes required. You can apply online using online registration or you may apply at a nearby CDTFA location.

Can you sell food on the sidewalk in California? ›

"Selling street food is no longer a crime in California, easing fears of jail time and deportation".

Does cooking at home save money? ›

Almost anything you cook from scratch will cost less and be healthier than processed, canned, or frozen versions of the same food. In fact, it will be better than most restaurant food. Homemade meals are cheaper, healthier, tastier, and better for the planet.

How can I sell food from home in USA? ›

Permit To Sell Food From Home
  1. Business license. Most US states require that you get a business license to operate any type of business, including a food business. ...
  2. Sales privilege license (aka sales tax license). ...
  3. Food handler's license. ...
  4. Some type of kitchen inspection. ...
  5. Zoning permit.

Do you need a food permit to sell food in California? ›

Both wholesalers and retailers must apply for a permit. If you do not hold a seller's permit and will make sales during temporary periods, such as Christmas tree sales and rummage sales, you must apply for a temporary seller's permit.

How do I get a California health permit? ›

To apply for a Public Health License, a garment manufacturing business must complete the Application and provide the required documentation as described on the application form. Turn in the application and documentation to the Environmental Health Office at 5050 Commerce Drive, Baldwin Park, CA 91706.

What permits do I need to sell food from a cart in California? ›

Health Permit and Inspection – Most county environmental health departments require mobile food facilities to obtain a health permit. Many also conduct periodic inspections of your facility and equipment. Fire Permit – Some jurisdictions require that permits be obtained from their fire departments.

What is the difference between Class A and B cottage food? ›

“Class A” Cottage Food Operations only engage in direct sales at the home where the CFO operates or at a community event. “Class B” Cottage Food Operators engage in both direct and indirect sales and may sell outside of the county in which the CFO is located if a permit is granted by the outside county to the CFO.

How much is a street food vendor permit in California? ›

Fees. If we are able to approve your application we will send you a bill. The fee for a Street Vending Permit is $430 a year. You also need to pay a $9 Board of Appeals surcharge.

Do you need a permit to sell food on the street in California? ›

What are the food seller laws in California? Any food business will need a seller's permit, as food items count as tangible goods sold, and they are subject to sales tax.

How long does it take to get a seller's permit in California? ›

Typically a Seller's Permit will be issued within 14 days if the application is received by mail. It can be acquired the same day, if applied for in person.

How much is a food handlers card in California? ›

$7.95 | California Food Handlers Card | eFoodHandlers®

Do you need a permit to give away free food in California? ›

Food prepared in a private home and given away free of charge for charitable purposes, such as feedin unhoused individuals, does not require a permit.

How to sell food on the street in California? ›

Class B Permit

In California, an individual may not sell indirectly to anyone outside one's own county. The exception would be if the county where one wants to sell has specifically allowed indirect sales of homemade food products. An individual must pass an annual kitchen inspection to receive a Class B permit.

What is the new street vendor law in California? ›

On September 17, 2018, former Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 946, which is also known as the Safe Sidewalk Vending Act. This law ends criminalization of sidewalk vending in California and allows local authorities to adopt non-criminal laws to protect public health, safety and welfare.

What does SB 972 mean? ›

SB 972 attempts to facilitate greater access for food vendors to get the required county and city approvals for food vending permits. The bill provides that counties may approve a food cart design which meets safety requirements, in lieu of approving individually manufactured carts.

What food can I make at home and sell? ›

People who manufacture food at home can only sell low-risk foods such as coffee and tea blends, dry foods such as granola, chips and popcorn, baked goods such as breads, cookies and some cakes, and jams and preserves. Many food items fall within acceptable parameters.

What is the fastest way to make money from home? ›

23 Easy Ways to Make Money From Home
  1. Rent out rooms in your home. ...
  2. Be a housesitter. ...
  3. Become an online tutor. ...
  4. Rent out your car. ...
  5. Start a freelance business. ...
  6. Pet sitting at your home. ...
  7. Monetize social media and streaming accounts. ...
  8. Sell web domain names.

Can cooking be a side hustle? ›

If you have talent in the kitchen, cooking as a side hustle may be an option for you. Many professional chefs are using websites to find extra shifts to make money by cooking for short-staffed restaurants. Others cook as private chefs or cater small events.

What is the average cost of a homemade meal? ›

The average price per serving of home cooked meals is $4.31 – while the average cost of eating out is $20.37.

Is it cheaper to cook or eat out? ›

In March 2023, the cost of eating out rose 8.8%, while the cost of eating at home went up 8.4%. Many restaurants have raised prices because of inflation, experts say. This could indicate that the cost of eating out may cost more than cooking at home.

How much should a meal cost at home? ›

The average commercially-prepared meal costs around $13. Even if you rarely spend this much money at one time when you eat out, consider frequency. Two meals for $6.50 will add up to the same price. By contrast, the average meal prepared at home costs around $4 for groceries – a $9 savings per person per meal.

What is the best food to sell from home? ›

Easy Food To Sell To Make Money
  • Candy and other confectionery.
  • Cookies, pastries, and other baked goods.
  • Dry herbs, seasonings, and herb mixes.
  • Homemade fresh bread.
  • Hummus and other dips.
  • Jams, jellies, and other preserves.
  • Nuts, coated, and uncoated.
  • Pickles and other pickled vegetables.

What foods to sell to make money? ›

Most Profitable Concession Stand Foods
  • Popcorn.
  • Cotton Candy.
  • Nachos.
  • Pretzels.
  • Roasted Nuts.
  • Snow Cones.
  • Corn Dogs.
  • Ice Cream.
Jan 19, 2022

Which food business is most profitable? ›

List of Most Profitable Food Businesses -Sorted by Highest Profit Margin:
  • Food Trucks – 7% average profit margin.
  • Candy Stores – 6 to 8% profit margin.
  • Bakeries – 4 to 9% profit margin.
  • Ice cream shops – 3 to 19%
  • Restaurants – 3 to 5% average profit margin.
  • Grocery stores – 2% profit margin (organic and natural foods 5-10%)

What is a Mehko permit? ›

(Local environmental health permit required) Microenterprise home kitchen operation (MEHKO) defined under the California Retail Food Code (CRFC), is a food facility that is operated by a resident in a private home where food is stored, handled, and prepared for, and may be served to consumers.

How much is a business license in California? ›

In general, most CA small businesses will pay between $50 and $100 for a general business license. Larger corporations may be subject to charges based on their projected revenue.

How much is a Class A license in California? ›

Driver's License (DL) Fees
– Original (Class A) – Original (Class B) – Renewal – Adding a motorcycle license (Class M1/M2) – Removing restrictions (requires a driving test)$41
– Replacement (lost or stolen) – Info update – Adding a firefighter endorsement – Removing restrictions (requires a driving test)$33
22 more rows

How to start home health business in ca? ›

In order to get a home care license in California and start your home care business, you will need to submit the California home care license application along with the application fee. From there, you will need to staff your home care agency with the required staff (call us for details).

Do you need insurance to get a permit in California? ›

All drivers in the State of California must have proof of car insurance. This is true whether you've had your license for 20 years or you're a teenage motorist driving on your learner's permit.

How much is a California Medical Board license? ›

Once your application is complete, you must pay an initial license fee of $888 before the Board can issue your license.

What do you need to have a food cart in California? ›

Permits, Licenses, Parking, and Insurance - $5,000 -$10,000

You need to make sure your food truck business is legal and compliant before you even think about starting to sell food. Business insurance, food service permits, code inspections, and food truck licenses are all necessary expenditures.

Do you need a permit to sell prepackaged food in California? ›

Processors of general food commodities (e.g. baked goods, noodles, processed fresh vegetables, seafood, snack foods, dietary supplements, etc.) must obtain a Processed Food Registration (PFR) from FDB. A PFR certificate is a firm's basic health permit.

How to get the permit to sell food in the street in Los Angeles? ›

Vending permits are available by appointment by calling (213) 847-6000. Visit our emergency response page for more info, under "Street Use Permits," along with other COVID-19 information.

Do you need a license to sell baked goods from home in California? ›

California Department of Public Health (CDPH) does not permit or register Cottage Food Operations (CFO); however, we maintain the approved CFO foods list. A Cottage Food Operation can prepare and package certain non-potentially hazardous foods in a private home-kitchen.

How do I get a Class A food permit in California? ›

To get a Class A permit, you must complete a self-certification checklist, but there will be no physical inspection of your kitchen. Class B permit. You need a Class B permit if you want to sell indirectly to customers – for example, through stores, restaurants, or other venues that will sell your products for you.

Is it legal to sell food from home in California? ›

Yes, you can sell food from home so long as you have California-required health and food handling permits and business licenses. You must get a permit to sell food from home from the county health department in California.

How much do street vendors make in California? ›

Salaries typically start from $14.00 per hour and go up to $22.81 per hour.

Do you need a permit to sell fruit on the street in California? ›

Farming produce is allowed in most zones throughout the County without any permits, however depending on what you want to do with the produce, you may need a permit or two. And you always want to practice California Small Farm Food Safety Guidelines (California Department of Food & Agriculture).

What do I need to sell tacos on the street in California? ›

According to Small Business Charon, vendors need to take a food-handling class, have a vending license and a health permit. Gonzalez says having a permit has its disadvantages. “It charges a lot of taxes and what type of oil you can or cannot use,” he said.

How do I get a permit to sell food on the street in San Diego? ›

If you would like to apply for an annual permit, please contact our Plan Check unit at (858) 505-6659 to start the San Diego County mobile food permit approval process. Eligible for two fee-exempt permits per calendar year for the entire organization. A copy of your 501(c) letter must be attached to this application.

Do bars have to sell food in California? ›

Businesses must sell food with the purchase of booze. The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control provided guidance to accompany the new bills, including which types of liquor licenses are permitted to participate, and which type of to-go container is allowed.

How do I get a permit to sell food on the street in Texas? ›

How can I obtain a Retail Food Establishment Application? A Retail Food Permit Application may be obtained by contacting the Foods Licensing Group at 512-834-6727. The applications can also be downloaded from the Food Establishments Licensing page.

Do I need a sellers permit to sell food in California? ›

You must obtain a seller's permit if you: Are engaged in business in California and. Intend to sell or lease tangible personal property that would ordinarily be subject to sales tax if sold at retail.

What license do I need to sell prepackaged food in California? ›

Three of the most important permits that let you sell food to your community include the food handlers license, food facility health permit, and seller's permit.

How much is a street vendor permit in California? ›

Fees. If we are able to approve your application we will send you a bill. The fee for a Street Vending Permit is $430 a year. You also need to pay a $9 Board of Appeals surcharge.

What is a microenterprise home kitchen? ›

Microenterprise home kitchen operation (MEHKO) defined under the California Retail Food Code (CRFC), is a food facility that is operated by a resident in a private home where food is stored, handled, and prepared for, and may be served to consumers.

Do street food vendors need a permit in California? ›

Vendors must also comply with state laws. For example, food vendors must comply with the California Retail Food Code, which requires food vendors to obtain permits from the Department of Public Health. Learn more about Los Angeles County's Mobile Food Vending Investigation and Compliance Program here.

Do you need a permit to sell food on the street in LA? ›

You can apply online or in person. There is no fee for this permit, but one is responsible for paying quarterly or annual sales tax. This is typically also done in one day. If you will be vending food, you will need a health permit issued by the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health.

Do you need a permit to sell fruit in California? ›

Farming produce is allowed in most zones throughout the County without any permits, however depending on what you want to do with the produce, you may need a permit or two. And you always want to practice California Small Farm Food Safety Guidelines (California Department of Food & Agriculture).

What do you need to have a food cart in Texas? ›

Food Truck Permits That Are Required To Operate In Texas

In order to operate legally, your food truck must have a license from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). You will also need a local county health department permit where you plan to do business.

What food should I sell? ›

Most Profitable Concession Stand Foods
  • Popcorn.
  • Cotton Candy.
  • Nachos.
  • Pretzels.
  • Roasted Nuts.
  • Snow Cones.
  • Corn Dogs.
  • Ice Cream.
Jan 19, 2022

How much is a food vendor license in Los Angeles? ›

In September 2020, the city implemented a reduced cost permit fee of $291 in response to the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on street vendors, according to the motion. The reduced cost fee expired on July 1, 2022, and the cost reverted to $541.

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