As I reside in CA, it appears starting a home cupcake / baking business is illegal. I understand you can rent a commercial kitchen and obtain the required food handling permits and insurance. But is it possible to purchase the cupcakes from a caterer, decorate them and resell them legally without the inspection as I'm not baking them? I'm interested in the decorating part; not so much the baking if I can avoid it.
I've been looking for a cake decorating job with no luck.
nope. its not just about the baking part of it. its the food handling as well.
So there's no getting around it?
Don't even go there. If there was "some way around it" don't you think everyone with a set of tips and a BC recipe would be in the business?
i would call your health department and ask them directly. because when i enquired they asked me specifically if i was just going to be decorating or baking as well, which implied it was a different set of rules for if you are only decorating. I would want to do my baking as well, and in my current premises, its not going to be possible to be approved.
but i say ring your health department, tell them your exact plans, ask if its ok, if it is, ask for that in writing from them, and for for it!
Don't hold your breath. The laws are written to prevent food borne illness and it is the uncooked items (fillings and icings) that carry the highest risk.
Having just gotten my food permit and business license in CA I can tell you that they asked and then directed that no, let me repeat as they didi...NO!...food product can be made or stored at my home. It must all be done in the commercial kitchen.
When I am done with my products they must be delivered or picked up. They cannot go to my home, even if the person want's to pick it up there. They can't do it. If I am shipping something, it must be packaged at the kitchen and taken to shipper directly.
No food products for sale may go into the home, period. Also, if you were going to look into doing something like that, which can happen, you may have to get an additional seller's permit, like a wholesale permit from the government.
Thank you All for your replies and great information. Looks like two choices. Go legit or become an employee. I think I'll go the employee route.