I fun this and thought I would share.......
Regarding the last point about church kitchens: the site says "these are non-profit organizations and therefore cannot legally rent out kitchen space for a for-profit business." I'm not so sure this is accurate information, I don't see any legal reason why the church would not be able to rent its kitchen space out to anyone. Of course, the renter would need their own separate health department certificate.
Accepting income from for-profit organizations should be perfectly fine according to the IRS, the big no-nos with 501(c)(3) charitable organizations are involvement with politics and allowing earnings to flow through to private shareholders of the organization.
The incubator map on that site is a very useful resource though, for people looking for shared commercial kitchen space.
I agree with you Jason. It may however have to work out that you the "renter" make a "donation" to the church. That's want we did we we "rented" the church for our wedding...we were required to make a "donation".
However, I do not know if churches have a "commerical" kitchen. Please correct me if I am wrong but doesn't a commerical kitchen have to be certified by the health department? Churches are not typically certified and have annual inspections. They are typically used by the members for church functions. (well at least ones I have been to!)
I don't believe the church kitchen has to be certified to operate purely for church functions (although some are certified), but anyone who rents it commercially would need to pass a certification inspection.
There's no need for the "donation" workaround, it's perfectly OK for churches to bring in income to meet their operating expenses. The only thing they can't do is funnel that income to one or more private shareholders.
OK...so if someone was to rent from a church and they (the church) were already certified then the renter would need their own ServSafe and business license? And if the church was not certified as commercial then the renter would nee the ServSafe, business license and would need the health department to come out and certify the kitchen?
Am I missing anything? If the church was to become certified would they then have to have people ServSafe certified to use it or only if they were to cook/bake to resale? (sorry I hope I am making sense)
OK...so if someone was to rent from a church and they (the church) were already certified then the renter would need their own ServSafe and business license?
Correct, plus the renter would still need to pass a health inspection at the church kitchen -- each combination of business + facility must be certified.
And if the church was not certified as commercial then the renter would nee the ServSafe, business license and would need the health department to come out and certify the kitchen?
Am I missing anything? If the church was to become certified would they then have to have people ServSafe certified to use it or only if they were to cook/bake to resale?
It's my understanding that in most areas church kitchens do not have to be certified to conduct church business, which includes cooking for staff and congregation and would even include church bake sales, as long as all the money goes to the church (or other charity) and not to any private individuals.
The for-profit renter of the church kitchen would still need to be certified, even if the church kitchen is not. If the kitchen passes inspection, the renter is good to go, but if there are major issues and the church is not willing to fix them, then the renter is SOL.
If the kitchen fails inspection, I believe the church would still be able to use it for church functions...although if there are really glaring issues like spoiled food sitting around there could be repercussions.