Workshop explores what’s cookin’ on the home kitchen-based business front

That scrumptious pie or luscious loaf of bread you just baked is certainly good enough to eat – but is it good enough to sell?

Before money changes hands, be sure your home kitchen-based business is up to scratch.

The St. Lucie UF/IFAS Extension is offering a first-of-its-kind workshop later this  month to help home bakers and cooks stay on the right side of the state’s Cottage Food laws.

“The state’s pretty particular about food safety laws,” said Extension agent Carol Alberts.

Products made for bake sales, farmers market booths, and any other food-based, money-making venture require at least a basic set of business skills and knowledge of food safety guidelines.

The upcoming workshop, scheduled for Oct. 26, will go over the requirements for receiving a state license for collecting sales tax on the items.

“Once you get your license to collect sales tax, you’re in business,” Alberts said.

According to Alberts, home-based bakers have the potential to turn their kitchens into $50,000 (gross) sales operations.

“Foodies interested in making money” are the type of people Alberts expects to attend the workshop, which will cover sales methods, labeling and food safety.

Home kitchens don’t have to jump through the same hoops that commercial kitchens do, but there are still some guidelines they should meet in order to ensure safe consumption.

Items that can be sold from home kitchens include shelf-stable products that don’t require refrigeration. Beverages and meat products are prohibited.

Alberts said the most common home-kitchen goods are breads, granolas, trail mixes and jams.

 

The cost for the workshop is $25 per person and registration can be done online: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/make-money-selling-cottage-food-products-tickets-48799653076?aff=ebdssbdestsearch. Nothing needs be brought to the workshop, unless attendees wish to take notes. Alberts will provide printouts and other materials.

For more information, call Extension Agent Carol Alberts at 772-462-1895. The program takes place at the UF/IFAS Extension St. Lucie County Office, 8400 Picos Road, Fort Pierce.   

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