Handing Out Business Cards Before Inspection?

Business By pinkpiggie78 Updated 9 Mar 2009 , 10:18pm by SweetArt

pinkpiggie78 Posted 7 Mar 2009 , 2:10pm
post #1 of 14

Alright, so I know I can't sell cakes before my ktichen is inspected, but is it okay to hand out my business cards? I am registered with the state as a business...

13 replies
Mencked Posted 7 Mar 2009 , 2:20pm
post #2 of 14

I'm in the same boat! I'm afraid to hand out business cards just yet to perfect strangers, but I have handed them out to friends, family and current customers.....

pinkpiggie78 Posted 7 Mar 2009 , 2:23pm
post #3 of 14

I was told it would take 2-3 weeks for them to setup an appt and it will be 4 weeks on Monday! Wedding season is starting!!!!

Mencked Posted 7 Mar 2009 , 2:34pm
post #4 of 14

We're still working on the kitchen--it's been a slow, do-it-yourself process, but I'm so ready to get going full steam!

cakeschmake Posted 8 Mar 2009 , 3:28pm
post #5 of 14

I am in the same boat. waiting on inspection. And I am afraid I am going to miss the bridal fair my town is having.... so frustrating cause I want to get going....

PieceofCakeAZ Posted 8 Mar 2009 , 7:38pm
post #6 of 14

There is no reason not to start handing out your business cards now. Contrary to what you may read sometimes... advertising an unlicensed (or soon to be licensed) cake business is not illegal... it's the actual filling of orders from the unlicensed kitchen that is the illegal part. icon_biggrin.gif So hand out cards as much as you want, just get your inspection before filling the orders!!

Best of luck!

cakeschmake Posted 8 Mar 2009 , 10:05pm
post #7 of 14

thanks, thats a good point... I dont want to miss out so I'm gonna start now getting the word out there...

Carolynlovescake Posted 8 Mar 2009 , 11:16pm
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by PieceofCakeAZ

There is no reason not to start handing out your business cards now. Contrary to what you may read sometimes... advertising an unlicensed (or soon to be licensed) cake business is not illegal... it's the actual filling of orders from the unlicensed kitchen that is the illegal part. icon_biggrin.gif So hand out cards as much as you want, just get your inspection before filling the orders!!

Best of luck!




That may be right in your state but I know of the two that I have lived in that handing out business cards for an unlicenced/unregistered business is definately illegal.

I've known people to be caught in both and their fines were between $3,000 and $10,000.

pinkpiggie78 Posted 9 Mar 2009 , 12:07am
post #9 of 14

Well see this is the thing... I am registered and licensed... just not inspected..

PieceofCakeAZ Posted 9 Mar 2009 , 1:15am
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarolynGwen

Quote:
Originally Posted by PieceofCakeAZ

There is no reason not to start handing out your business cards now. Contrary to what you may read sometimes... advertising an unlicensed (or soon to be licensed) cake business is not illegal... it's the actual filling of orders from the unlicensed kitchen that is the illegal part. icon_biggrin.gif So hand out cards as much as you want, just get your inspection before filling the orders!!

Best of luck!



That may be right in your state but I know of the two that I have lived in that handing out business cards for an unlicenced/unregistered business is definately illegal.

I've known people to be caught in both and their fines were between $3,000 and $10,000.




I will politely disagree. icon_biggrin.gif They weren't fined for advertising, they were fined for operating an unlicensed business... advertising is just what got them caught. A business is only illegal if you are operating illegally. A business that isn't "operating" can't by definition be operating illegally (in this case, operating would be functioning as a bakery). In other words, the health department doesn't care if you tell the world "I make cakes"... they care about you actually starting to make cakes.

Promoting a coming business isn't illegal in any state. Ever see a sign on a building that is under construction that says "Joe's Restaurant Coming Soon"? Obviously there is no legal kitchen there, but they aren't operating either... by the time they are in operation the kitchen will have been inspected.

In short...Advertising doesn't make it illegal, actually filling orders makes it illegal, irrespective of how those orders came to exist.

HeidiCrumbs Posted 9 Mar 2009 , 1:37am
post #11 of 14

I'm not opening my bakery until this coming summer, but I'm handing out business cards that I have written "opening in summer '09" on the back. That way, people can start the buzz even if I can't bake anything to sell yet. Good luck!

msbutter Posted 9 Mar 2009 , 2:50pm
post #12 of 14

I live in Michigan and I have been told by others in the business that if I advertise before I get licensed, I risk not getting licensed. The idea of legal vs. illegal, how can one prove they advertised but didn't do any work for someone. I'm sure that is what the State would be questioning. My advice, wait until you have your license, othewise you may never get it. Call your inspector and tell them what dilemma you have about missing out on upcoming business opportunities and maybe they can tell you what you can and can't do. Hope this helps.

PieceofCakeAZ Posted 9 Mar 2009 , 6:51pm
post #13 of 14

I'm really gonna need to see, in writing from a government source, one of these "until your business opens you can't tell anybody anything about it" laws. icon_wink.gif Then I am going start busting new pizza places as soon as they send me flyers in the mail that say "opening in May" icon_wink.gif

SweetArt Posted 9 Mar 2009 , 10:18pm
post #14 of 14

I just got a call from my Health Department today about this.

Back in November I contacted my Health Department because the bakery I was subletting shut down. I spoke with him about opening my own shop and he gave me the list of requirements and I began to work on them.

During this time (yes, it's been over 4 months), I have continued to do bridal shows and hand out my info. Posted on the homepage of my website is a notice that I am moving and not accepting orders before May of this year, since I plan to re-open in late April, but I am reserving dates for wedding cakes for the rest of 2009.

The Health Inspector called today saying he saw that I was advertising and had been participating in bridal shows, but he knew that I did not have a licensed kitchen. I told him yes, I was, but that I was not taking orders due before May and that I was planning on calling him for inspection in mid-April. He said that was fine and I'll see him in about a month.

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