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 Question on selling homemade food products

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dortS

  • Total Posts: 7
  • Joined: 3/25/2009
  • Location: Princeton, MN
Question on selling homemade food products Wed, 03/25/09 3:27 PM (permalink)
Not sure if this is the correct place for this or not. Since I am currently not working I have a lot of free time to think and was trying to think of something I could do -
I make really good soup - it's actually a wierd passion of mine and am wondering what one would have to do to sell homemade soup on the open market. Do I need a license or some kind? Are their rules - that I have to follow - like making my soup in a sterile kitchen? Does anyone know where I would find this information? Any information would be greatly appreciated.
 
#1
    felix4067

    • Total Posts: 3298
    • Joined: 12/13/2003
    • Location: Near Grand Rapids, MI
    Re:Question on selling homemade food products Wed, 03/25/09 3:38 PM (permalink)
    Contact your county health department for sanitation rules.  Anything else you should be able to find through your local Chamber of Commerce.  You'll also need to register your business with the government to get a Federal ID number for tax purposes.
     
    #2
      jman

      • Total Posts: 1276
      • Joined: 12/25/2007
      • Location: berea, KY
      Re:Question on selling homemade food products Wed, 03/25/09 3:59 PM (permalink)
      felix4067


      Contact your county health department for sanitation rules.  Anything else you should be able to find through your local Chamber of Commerce.  You'll also need to register your business with the government to get a Federal ID number for tax purposes.


      While it's true that he needs to contact the local HD, it's not necessary to get a Federal ID number.  He can use his SS#, if he wants.  He may have to get a state number (in KY, it's called a Resale Certificate) for purposes of state sales tax or other income tax requirements.
       
      #3
        felix4067

        • Total Posts: 3298
        • Joined: 12/13/2003
        • Location: Near Grand Rapids, MI
        Re:Question on selling homemade food products Wed, 03/25/09 4:07 PM (permalink)
        I forgot about that...when I had my business I had to have a federal ID number to buy supplies.

        At any rate, I'd start with the chamber of commerce...they should know everything and probably even have a handout listing who to contact and what forms need to be filled out.

        I know that here (Grand Rapids, MI), a friend had a coffee shop and started serving homemade soups, which she used to make at home (go figure) and bring in.  The health department shut that down immediately and the soups had to be made in the shop or they would've lost their license.
         
        #4
          Nancypalooza

          • Total Posts: 3778
          • Joined: 6/17/2004
          • Location: Columbia, SC
          Re:Question on selling homemade food products Wed, 03/25/09 4:11 PM (permalink)
          You might want to try looking for a local joint, maybe a bar with a food license, that would give you a cut or pay you for the soup--maybe you could make it on their premises--to see if this is something that could take off?
           
          #5
            Curbside Grill

            • Total Posts: 3916
            • Joined: 10/11/2007
            • Location: Lawrenceburg, TN
            Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 2:25 PM (permalink)
            MN is one of the states that require a license to sell food and commercial kitchen. Health Dept' start for license, also don't know your area, might go thru University to see about where 'incubator kitchens' located. These are a step up from community kitchens. Becoming very popular idea. Might even think about starting one yourself. Have found that using someones rest. or bar they want a cut. But an option.
            Church's,Lodges they have kitchens, maybe work a deal with them. One soup nite/month to pay for use of facilities.
            There are a bunch of ways to get kitchen space. But inquire about licensing first.
            <message edited by Curbside Grill on Fri, 03/27/09 3:06 PM>
             
            #6
              ann peeples

              • Total Posts: 8317
              • Joined: 5/21/2006
              • Location: West Allis, Wisconsin
              Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 3:43 PM (permalink)
              When I was running a deli back in the late nineties, I carried several homemade food from independants.What was required back then was an approved kitchen( alot of these people used church kitchens) and some kind of insurance policy( liability, I am sure) But laws have changed so much-check with the health dept. for your area and go from there...
               
              #7
                edwmax

                • Total Posts: 2015
                • Joined: 1/1/2007
                • Location: Cairo, GA
                Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 4:04 PM (permalink)
                Call your County Extension Service first!  If it is feasible & legal to work from your home kitchen, they would know and can assist you with getting the proper inspections and permits. In many states the Extension Service do all the inspections for a home based Business.

                If you go to the HD first most likely, they will treat you as a commercial kitchen and not assist you as a home based business.

                <message edited by edwmax on Fri, 03/27/09 4:05 PM>
                 
                #8
                  PopsDogHouse

                  Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 4:52 PM (permalink)
                  You may also encounter the requirement that your product be analyzed and approved by the FDA if you are bottling it and selling it on the open market. 
                   
                  #9
                    Curbside Grill

                    • Total Posts: 3916
                    • Joined: 10/11/2007
                    • Location: Lawrenceburg, TN
                    Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 6:02 PM (permalink)
                    Mn is one of the states that require commercial kitchen period.
                    https://www.revisor.leg.state.mn.us/statutes/?id=28A.15&year=2008
                     
                    MN simply states that anything resold has to come from a commercial kitchen.
                    This is simple. Everybody freaks. O'my gosh cannot do this.
                    Alot of states have home kitchen licenses. Got 46 in database now,  yes- no, where to go, who to apply to.
                    So much out there just look. 
                     

                     
                    <message edited by Curbside Grill on Fri, 03/27/09 10:46 PM>
                     
                    #10
                      JacksSnacks

                      • Total Posts: 348
                      • Joined: 8/28/2008
                      • Location: paris, TX
                      Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 9:38 PM (permalink)
                      Here in the great state of (hand on heart)  TEXAS, you must have health dept. cert.  If you have trailer and permit then you are there. You can make food under your health permit. The HD lady told me the biggest problem she had was chasing down people making food at home and selling it to the public.
                       As far as packaging and selling its not too bad there are two successful local businesses that are in my area. One makes a sugary patty with peanuts called "peanut rounder" , the other makes hot sauce called "hell on the Red". these companys run with I think 3 people each.
                       
                      #11
                        BigRedLunchbox

                        • Total Posts: 154
                        • Joined: 8/10/2008
                        • Location: Midland, TX
                        Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 11:10 PM (permalink)
                        Check this guy out ... http://www.souppeddler.com/
                        He started a soup delivery service and delivered by bike. Now he has a commercial kitchen set-up and greatly expanded menu.
                         
                        #12
                          BigRedLunchbox

                          • Total Posts: 154
                          • Joined: 8/10/2008
                          • Location: Midland, TX
                          Re:Question on selling homemade food products Fri, 03/27/09 11:10 PM (permalink)
                          Check this guy out ... http://www.souppeddler.com/
                          He started a soup delivery service and delivered by bike. Now he has a commercial kitchen set-up and greatly expanded menu.
                           
                          #13
                            Foodbme

                            • Total Posts: 9566
                            • Joined: 9/1/2006
                            • Location: Gilbert, AZ
                            Re:Question on selling homemade food products Sat, 03/28/09 1:40 AM (permalink)
                            Liability is a big issue. If you get to the stage where you can legally sell your product, you need liabliity insurance in case your Split Pea Soup kills someone!!
                             
                            #14
                              6star

                              • Total Posts: 4388
                              • Joined: 1/28/2004
                              • Location: West Peoria, IL
                              Re:Question on selling homemade food products Sat, 03/28/09 2:37 AM (permalink)
                              Foodbme


                              Liability is a big issue. If you get to the stage where you can legally sell your product, you need liabliity insurance in case your Split Pea Soup kills someone!!


                              dortS are you old enough to remember the wide line of Bon Vivant gourmet soups? (They were very popular in our store).  In 1971 their vichyssoise killed one man (five cans were found with botulism) and sickened others, and the FDA made them recall all their soups.  It forced them into bankruptcy.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bon_Vivant
                               
                              Liability insurance is a must!
                               
                              #15
                                dortS

                                • Total Posts: 7
                                • Joined: 3/25/2009
                                • Location: Princeton, MN
                                Re:Question on selling homemade food products Mon, 03/30/09 9:03 PM (permalink)
                                Thank you all so much this is great information!!!

                                Appreciate it!!!!
                                 
                                #16
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