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California Relaxes Laws for Chef Entrepreneurs


Until this year in California, it was illegal for entrepreneurs to sell food made in their homes. However, the new Homemade Food Act, which came into effect in January this year, has made it possible for budding chef entrepreneurs to sell food made by them in their own kitchens.

The act, which permits a wide range of foods to be produced and sold from a domestic rather than a commercial kitchen, has opened up the marketplace for “foodpreneurs” or all expertise, backgrounds and ages. All non-hazardous foods are covered by the act, including baked foods, jams, spices and tortillas.

Foodpreneurs in the Golden State are covered by the Homemade Food Act provided their gross annual revenues from the sale of their goods, does not exceed $35,000. This limit will be increased to $45,000 in 2014, and $50,000 in 2015.

California is not the first, nor will it be the last, state to implement relaxed laws for chef entrepreneurs. North Carolina already has a “cottage food law” which permits an array of foods to be cooked form a private kitchen and sold. These foods include baked goods, jellies, jams, dried mixes, sauces and pickles.  Alabama too has a cottage food law, albeit a limit version of North Carolina’s. There are 32 states in total that have implemented similar laws for foods cooked in a private kitchen.


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