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Cottage food laws by state can vary considerably. A brief overview of each state will show how a cottage food license and other regulations are completely different in each region.
Our cottage food law directory answers common questions about cottage food laws, like:
Cottage food law in Alabama is liberal and does allow for online shipping, unlimited annual sales and a wide range of foods that can be produced. All that is required is a basic safety course for food handling. Food operations that do not need permits in Alabama are common and controlled by these regulations.
In Alaska you can only sell cottage foods in person, and you can’t sell more than $25,000. Also, the seller has to have a business license.
Arizona cottage food producers have to register with the state, but it is free. After completing the safety course, sellers can produce and sell anywhere in the state, including grocery stores.
Arkansas allows the sale of cottage food anywhere, even to other states. As long as the food is nonperishable, it can be sold, and there are no annual limits or permits.
California state laws require special permits to sell cottage foods. Additionally, there are different classes of cottage food sellers, and extra regulations can and do exist at the county level. A cottage food license in Los Angeles will have different requirements than one in San Diego.
In our California cottage food law guide, you’ll find answers to questions like:
Colorado does not require a license for cottage food and sales limits are specific to each food. Producers can only carry out direct sales.
Sales cannot exceed $25,000 each year in Connecticut, and they have to be on a pre-approved list. Also, cottage food sellers have to get a $50 license, a $15 food safety course and a home inspection.
Delaware arguably has the most convoluted path to get into cottage food production. After going through an extensive application process, nonperishable foods can be sold to an annual limit of $25,000.
Annual limits in Florida are $250,000 and no license or training is required. All foods have to be nonperishable, and no indirect sales are allowed. Cottage food laws in Florida have little else to say. There is no required permit to sell food from home in Florida.
There are label requirements, and following the Florida cottage food label template can ensure compliance.
In our cottage food laws Florida guide, we answer questions like:
Georgia cottage food producers have to have a business license, go through a formal application and complete specialized training on top of getting a home inspection. But, there are no sales limits and the food list is expansive.
No permit to sell food from home is necessary in Hawaii, but only in-person sales are permitted. There are no annual limits, but a food safety course is required.
In Idaho, there were no regulations before 2016. Now, sellers are limited to low-risk foods, but there are no special permits or requirements, and food can be sold from home, online and at select events. Only restaurants, retail stores and wholesalers are not allowed.
Illinois runs most cottage food management through local health departments, so rules can vary. There is a secondary set of regulations that specifically apply to home bakeries, and those are a bit more standardized. Cottage food laws in Illinois are currently under legal challenges and may change in the near future.
In our guide to Illinois cottage food law, we answer questions like:
Indiana cottage food laws limit sales to roadside stands and farmer’s markets. Despite that, there are no licenses or fees to get started, and there are no sales limits.
Iowa splits cottage food regulations from home bakeries. For cottage foods, there are no licenses or sales limits. The foods just have to be nonperishable and labeled.
Kansas does not have formal cottage food laws. If you sell at a farmer’s market or through a food establishment, you need a license. Otherwise, there are no clear rules or limitations.
Kentucky only allows direct sales to customers, and there is an annual limit of $50,000. Also, every cottage food producer has to register with the health department.
Louisiana caps sales at $20,000 each year. Also, the state has extra regulations for baked goods. Other than that, nonperishable items can be made at home and sold anywhere in the state. This is as of the passing of Louisiana cottage food law 2020.
In our Louisiana cottage food law guide, we answer top questions, like:
Maine allows local governments to remove any restrictions they choose from cottage food regulations. The state requires licensing and kitchen inspections, but some local areas override those rules.
Maryland doesn’t allow sales beyond $25,000 each year, but they do allow for food co-ops, allowing cottage producers to sell just about anywhere. Also, there are no permits or special training.
Massachusetts considers residential kitchens to be food establishments. That subjects them to the same standards as any commercial kitchen or restaurant.
No licenses or inspections are needed according to Michigan cottage food law, but the annual limit is $25,000. Also, only direct sales are allowed.
Minnesota separates cottage food producers by how much money they make. If it’s less than $5,000, qualifications are free. If it’s more, then you have to take a special food safety course and can only sell up to $78,000 a year. For the first regulation, there is no cottage food license in MN.
The Mississippi annual limit is $35,000, but the list of allowed foods is liberal. There are no registrations, permits or special safety classes required to get started.
Missouri only allows direct sales and up to an annual limit of $50,000. They also have a very restrictive set of allowed foods that is mostly relegated to baked goods, jams and dry herbs.
Montana cottage food laws are very lax. There are virtually no limitations, and government agencies cannot create new regulations. The only real limit is that you can’t sell meat products, and customers must be informed that the food is homemade.
Nebraska requires a food safety course and limits the foods that can be sold. No other major limitations exist, and food can be sold across the state.
Nevada limits sales to $35,000 a year, and all sales must be in-person. Food producers also have to register with the appropriate health district. Whether or not more requirements exist depend on the health district within the state.
As long as you sell at a farmer’s market or from home, there are few regulations in New Hampshire. If you want to sell outside of these limitations, you need a special license that includes inspections and more. Also, sales are limited to $20,000 a year.
New Jersey has a normal list of pre-approved foods that can be sold by cottage producers. But, the state allows producers to get special approval for non-approved foods. Also, there is an annual sales cap at $50,000. Cottage food law in NJ in 2021 underwent some changes, but these are still the essential rules.
New Mexico allows fairly unrestricted sales, as long as they are direct. Cities and local governments can add extra licensing requirements, but local governments cannot overrule the general accessibility set by the state.
Cottage food laws in NY allow food sales anywhere, including stores. Registration is handled by the ag department, but there are no fees or sales limits. There are additional restrictions that exist in New York City.
Do I need a license to sell baked goods from home in NY? You only need to be registered with the ag department. No special license is necessary.
Our New York cottage food law guide answers your questions, like:
North Carolina does not have specific cottage food laws, but they do have a state program that helps producers get set up. Since North Carolina has no specific laws, cottage food production is technically in violation of federal laws, making things complicated.
North Dakota allows the sale of any non-meat foods. That said, regulations have swung back and forth dramatically and frequently in recent years. While producers can sell without limitations right now, that could change rapidly at any moment.
Ohio has a very restrictive set of allowed cottage foods. They don’t require licensing, but sales are very limited. Instead of direct sales, food producers have to get approval for wholesale operations, which are more regulated.
Oklahoma requires a food safety course and limits annual sales to $75,000. Other than that, limitations are sparse, and Oklahoma is one of the few states that allows interstate cottage food sales.
Cottage foods in Oregon are limited to $20,000 a year. But, Oregon has a Domestic Kitchen License and a Farm Direct Bill. Food producers who qualify for either are under different sets of regulations and can produce wider varieties of food with no sales limits.
Pennsylvania doesn’t have specific laws. Instead, the ag department controls the regulations. This gets around federal restrictions, but it also makes it hard to navigate the rules in order to get started. There is a registration fee, and additional local restrictions may apply.
Rhode Island only allows home food production for farmers. That production cannot exceed $2,500 each year, and the means to get approval for this production are extremely limited. Rhode Island arguably has the most restrictive cottage food access in the country.
South Carolina only allows select baked goods and candies to be sold, but there are no licenses or safety courses required. There are also no sales limits, but all sales have to be direct.
South Dakota is different in that products have to be tested before they can get sold. Testing can become cost prohibitive for many home operations, but approved foods can be sold without limits.
In Tennessee, Home Kitchens and Domestic Kitchens are different concepts. Home kitchens qualify as cottage food production, and they can operate without a license as long as they only perform indirect sales. Domestic kitchens must have a license and inspection and cannot sell more than 100 units each week.
Texas producers can sell anywhere in the state, including deliveries and online sales. Texes also allows frozen produce, which is banned in most states. Texas limits sales to $50,000 each year, and indirect sales are banned.
Utah has two sets of laws. Between the two of them, cottage food producers can sell from home and at specially approved locations. They can sell most types of foods, including some meats and raw milk.
Cottage food kitchens and home bakeries are separately regulated in Vermont. Between the two, most types of foods can be made and sold to varying limits. The laws are a bit convoluted, making it a little harder to get started.
Virginia does not require licenses or inspections to get started. They also offer home food processing operational licenses. Those are harder to get, but they allow a lot more kinds of foods for production.
Washington cottage food permits are some of the hardest to get. Even when you have one, sales are limited to $25,000, and very few foods can be produced. But, Washington does now allow foods to be shipped.
Home kitchens in West Virginia cannot be inspected by the government, and they can produce any nonperishable food. They can also sell with almost no restrictions whatsoever.
Wisconsin has two sets of regulations. One allows home bakeries. The other allows home canning. Outside of these regulations, cottage foods cannot be produced within the state.
Wyoming is one of the freest states for cottage food. Cottage foods can include any non-meat product, and there are some exceptions for meats. Foods can be sold anywhere, and the sales limit is $250,000 a year.
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