Question For Pa Bakers

Business By Chrisl121070 Updated 8 Aug 2011 , 1:55pm by yums

Chrisl121070 Posted 6 Mar 2011 , 12:41am
post #1 of 38

I've searched the forum and read some of the other posts, but couldn't find anything on this (although I'm sure it's there somewhere!)

I finally got the letter from my borough approving my home baking business, and now I just need to apply to the state dept of agr. Once I send that in, about how long does it take to get approval/schedule the inspection, and what all does the inspection entail? (I'm in York)

Thanks!

37 replies
stelly Posted 11 Mar 2011 , 2:47am
post #2 of 38

Just got my PA kitchen licensed last week! Yipee!

I submitted the paperwork toward the end of January. Took about 6 weeks to get the phone call that it was approved. Some of the reason it took that long was because I forgot to submit my sample labels and for some reason he didn't get my 1st email with them.
When he called saying my paperwork was in order, he scheduled the inspection for a few days later. I made sure I followed what I was told, (separate cabinet with bins for ingredients, a bin in the fridge to keep things separate...) The inspector didn't look at anything other than those two things. He even made a comment about the kitchen being so clean he didn't even need to get out his flashlight. It was very easy. He had a laptop and printer with him and he printed my license on the spot.

I'm in Chester County, though, so things may be different for you.

Good luck!

Phyllis52 Posted 11 Mar 2011 , 7:42pm
post #3 of 38

Wow, that is so exciting for both of you! I live in York and I know that since I have a dog I can't get a license. Did you also need to have a separate entrance in addition to no pets? So I guess I'll just have to keep fattening up my family and co-workers.

Best of Luck!

Chrisl121070 Posted 11 Mar 2011 , 9:30pm
post #4 of 38

awesome! Thanks for the info Stelly, and congrats!

Yeah, I don't have any pets, so that's not an issue. icon_smile.gif

stelly Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 1:46am
post #5 of 38

Nope, PA doesn't require a separate entrance.

I found the whole thing to be pretty simple and the people at the Dept of Agriculture were very helpful.

I think, as bakers, we're very lucky to live in this state!

Kima920 Posted 13 Mar 2011 , 1:28am
post #6 of 38

Congrats!!! They are really nice even when it comes to businesses. I opened up my own cake shop in York and the inspector came out and the whole process took about 1/2 hour! He asked me some questions, pointed out like 2 things that needed to be changed and gave me my license on the spot! Gotta love PA..I would have never gotten this far in NJ where I am originally from.
Kima

Chrisl121070 Posted 13 Mar 2011 , 12:27pm
post #7 of 38

good to know, thanks!

LisaR64 Posted 20 Mar 2011 , 2:15am
post #8 of 38

I have a dog, so we converted our basement into a second kitchen. I agree, PA is very friendly to home bakers. My inspection took about 5 minutes and she printed my permit before she left.

Chrisl121070 Posted 26 Mar 2011 , 8:27pm
post #9 of 38

Another question ... I'm looking at the application, and I'm unsure of this...

A license to collect sales tax has been obtained or applied for. For information on applying for a sales tax license, contact the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue - (717) 787-8201. A copy of the sales tax license or proof of application is attached to this application.

According to the PA Department of Revenue, my business is exempt from collection of sales tax.

Since food is non-taxable in PA, are bakers exempt from collection of sales tax?

Chrisl121070 Posted 15 May 2011 , 2:25pm
post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chrisl121070

Another question ... I'm looking at the application, and I'm unsure of this...

A license to collect sales tax has been obtained or applied for. For information on applying for a sales tax license, contact the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue - (717) 787-8201. A copy of the sales tax license or proof of application is attached to this application.

According to the PA Department of Revenue, my business is exempt from collection of sales tax.

Since food is non-taxable in PA, are bakers exempt from collection of sales tax?




Just checking if anyone knows the answer to this. icon_smile.gif

mommykrmt Posted 16 May 2011 , 3:33am
post #11 of 38

Hi, I'm also in PA and we are not exempt from tax because it is a luxury food. Sorry. But it is super easy to apply for the tax number online at http://www.pa100.state.pa.us/

madicakes Posted 16 May 2011 , 2:40pm
post #12 of 38

I am at about the same phase as you. I live in Adams county. I got my township approval letter. I am having my water tested Thursday, since we have a well. Then I will apply for my Dept of Ag license. I was told by my inspector that I can have my dog in the house, just confined to a seperate level. We have a two level home, with my kitchen upstairs and the dog confined to the lower level. She told me that as long as the dog does not have access to the kitchen at any time it is fine. I was wondering, regarding the refrigerator, if we needed a seperate fridge for cake supplies, or just separate bins.

mskavon Posted 16 May 2011 , 3:08pm
post #13 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by madicakes

I am at about the same phase as you. I live in Adams county. I got my township approval letter. I am having my water tested Thursday, since we have a well. Then I will apply for my Dept of Ag license. I was told by my inspector that I can have my dog in the house, just confined to a seperate level. We have a two level home, with my kitchen upstairs and the dog confined to the lower level. She told me that as long as the dog does not have access to the kitchen at any time it is fine. I was wondering, regarding the refrigerator, if we needed a seperate fridge for cake supplies, or just separate bins.



i live in Mercer County and i was told that you absolutely CANNOT have a dog in the home icon_sad.gif

Chrisl121070 Posted 16 May 2011 , 10:01pm
post #14 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommykrmt

Hi, I'm also in PA and we are not exempt from tax because it is a luxury food. Sorry. But it is super easy to apply for the tax number online at http://www.pa100.state.pa.us/




Thanks! So I assume I have to apply for that before I apply to the Dept. of Ag.

madicakes Posted 17 May 2011 , 1:41pm
post #15 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by mskavon

Quote:
Originally Posted by madicakes

I am at about the same phase as you. I live in Adams county. I got my township approval letter. I am having my water tested Thursday, since we have a well. Then I will apply for my Dept of Ag license. I was told by my inspector that I can have my dog in the house, just confined to a seperate level. We have a two level home, with my kitchen upstairs and the dog confined to the lower level. She told me that as long as the dog does not have access to the kitchen at any time it is fine. I was wondering, regarding the refrigerator, if we needed a seperate fridge for cake supplies, or just separate bins.


i live in Mercer County and i was told that you absolutely CANNOT have a dog in the home icon_sad.gif




I have heard this too. I am hoping that this isn't case of m doing all of this work to get ready and then the inspector coming and saying oh, I'm sorry, I was wrong, you can't have the dog! I saved the voicemail where she gave me the info and have listened to it over and over to make sure that I heard right.

mskavon Posted 17 May 2011 , 2:11pm
post #16 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by madicakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by mskavon

Quote:
Originally Posted by madicakes

I am at about the same phase as you. I live in Adams county. I got my township approval letter. I am having my water tested Thursday, since we have a well. Then I will apply for my Dept of Ag license. I was told by my inspector that I can have my dog in the house, just confined to a seperate level. We have a two level home, with my kitchen upstairs and the dog confined to the lower level. She told me that as long as the dog does not have access to the kitchen at any time it is fine. I was wondering, regarding the refrigerator, if we needed a seperate fridge for cake supplies, or just separate bins.


i live in Mercer County and i was told that you absolutely CANNOT have a dog in the home icon_sad.gif



I have heard this too. I am hoping that this isn't case of m doing all of this work to get ready and then the inspector coming and saying oh, I'm sorry, I was wrong, you can't have the dog! I saved the voicemail where she gave me the info and have listened to it over and over to make sure that I heard right.





Maybe it's the inspector in this area who has a personal rule? IDK, but i'm going to have to get rid of my THREE pound dog just to get a license icon_sad.gif

aces413 Posted 25 Jun 2011 , 12:08am
post #17 of 38

Does anyone know the pet status in Chester or Delaware counties? I have a cat and would like to move out of Delaware, to somewhere that is more lenient on home bakers. Is it okay as long as there is a door on the kitchen and the cat stays out? Or is the cat a no-go?

aces413 Posted 25 Jun 2011 , 12:09am
post #18 of 38

Oh, also...same counties apply...is an apartment okay, or do I need to be a homeowner?

Thanks!

yums Posted 25 Jun 2011 , 2:53pm
post #19 of 38

It is a PA state regulation, it should not vary by county. The PA regulations clearly state no animals in the dwelling at any time. As for renting I am sure you would have to get permission from the landlord before anything.

WhenTalentsCollide Posted 1 Jul 2011 , 1:26am
post #20 of 38

From what i read, there are to be no pets in the home for a PA based home kitchen...

aces413 Posted 1 Jul 2011 , 2:52am
post #21 of 38

Boooooooo. icon_sad.gif

haha...I figured.

Thanks!

gatorcake Posted 1 Jul 2011 , 3:40am
post #22 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by yums

It is a PA state regulation, it should not vary by county. The PA regulations clearly state no animals in the dwelling at any time. As for renting I am sure you would have to get permission from the landlord before anything.




This is in fact incorrect. Requirement 1 under the "Requirements for Home Food Processing" (which has a latest update of April 2011) states the following:

1. No animals/pets are permitted in the home at any time (unless caged or otherwise restricted from entering the kitchen / food processing area at ANY time).

Any doubts, go to the PA Dept of Ag site. Use their search box, enter the following terms: Home Food Processing.

You will be taken to a results page with a link to the "Home Food Processing" page. Click the link, go to the bottom of the page, you will see a set of links. Click the one that says Home Food Processing Requirements (it also has the links for the application). It will take you to a document (a pdf file) that lists all the conditions that must be met.

The Home Food Processing page also has a contact number for the program supervisor. Now whether or not a locality can place a more stringent requirement I have no idea. But per state regulations, pets can be in the home if they can be kept permanently out of the cooking area.

aces413 Posted 1 Jul 2011 , 6:59pm
post #23 of 38

OMG that makes me very happy! The cat has no need to ever be in my kitchen anyway (his food is in the second bathroom)...yay! I could put a door on the kitchen and have that be that!

I went to the site and did what you said, and found the requirements. I see that it DOES say the pet CAN be in the home, as long as it is NEVER in the kitchen. Thank you! The rest of the information in that file is also exactly what I've been looking for. Thanks again! Now I know how to prepare.

ILoveDaffodils Posted 5 Jul 2011 , 7:38pm
post #24 of 38

I am in PA and am in the early stages of considering a home based business. I checked with the local township and I would qualify.
I do have a dog but the PA regulations say: No animals/pets are permitted in the home at any time (unless caged or otherwise restricted from entering the kitchen / food processing area at ANY time).
It would be very easy to put doors on the kitchen entry as there is no reason for the dog to ever enter the kitchen. Does anyone have any idea if it is as easy as that to restrict so the regulation is followed?
Does anyone have any idea where I should go next? Is it the PA DEpt of Agriculature next or some county level organzation that should be my next stop? I live in Montgomery county.
How about insurance - I assume it is necessary but what kind? Is it something that all insurnace companies carry?
Thanks in advance for any information. I am trying to get all the requirements together so I can make a plan and determine if I want to pursue it.

aces413 Posted 8 Jul 2011 , 12:10am
post #25 of 38

I have all the same questions, and if I could get answers here, that would be AWESOME. icon_smile.gif So much faster and easier than jumping through hoops.
I know it's different depending on each individual location, but a general idea would be nice.

JillyPlot Posted 8 Jul 2011 , 1:55am
post #26 of 38

It says the animal can be caged... What about a turtle in a tank which is in the kitchen but on the other side from all food prep areas?

yums Posted 12 Jul 2011 , 10:24pm
post #27 of 38

Ugh!! I am so disappointed! After seeing the change in requirements I contacted my inspector and said he had not heard of allowing pets now so he took my info and said he would ask his boss. I did specifically tell him we had a dog and I would build a door blocking entry into the kitchen end of the house. Well, today he called and left the message that he spoke to those in charge and that there is still no pets allowed. He said he told them the wording is very misleading and the lady that wrote it is supposed to look into changing it again. So crap! I don't know if because its a dog and maybe something like a hamster in the backroom would be overlooked or what. Has anyone with a dog actually been approved? I mean I spoke to a lady in the beginning of June who said no, then this guy but all these people on here say its ok??!?!? So confused.
thumbsdown.gif

gatorcake Posted 12 Jul 2011 , 10:56pm
post #28 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by yums

Ugh!! I am so disappointed! After seeing the change in requirements I contacted my inspector and said he had not heard of allowing pets now so he took my info and said he would ask his boss. I did specifically tell him we had a dog and I would build a door blocking entry into the kitchen end of the house. Well, today he called and left the message that he spoke to those in charge and that there is still no pets allowed. He said he told them the wording is very misleading and the lady that wrote it is supposed to look into changing it again. So crap! I don't know if because its a dog and maybe something like a hamster in the backroom would be overlooked or what. Has anyone with a dog actually been approved? I mean I spoke to a lady in the beginning of June who said no, then this guy but all these people on here say its ok??!?!? So confused.
thumbsdown.gif




Go straight to the program supervisor. If you do not want to call her, you can email her. It is not unheard of for local officials to think they understand an ordinance. Frankly I do not know what is all that misleading or confusing about the language as written. Its pretty straightforward.

ILoveDaffodils Posted 12 Jul 2011 , 11:12pm
post #29 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by yums

Ugh!! I am so disappointed! After seeing the change in requirements I contacted my inspector and said he had not heard of allowing pets now so he took my info and said he would ask his boss. I did specifically tell him we had a dog and I would build a door blocking entry into the kitchen end of the house. Well, today he called and left the message that he spoke to those in charge and that there is still no pets allowed. He said he told them the wording is very misleading and the lady that wrote it is supposed to look into changing it again. So crap! I don't know if because its a dog and maybe something like a hamster in the backroom would be overlooked or what. Has anyone with a dog actually been approved? I mean I spoke to a lady in the beginning of June who said no, then this guy but all these people on here say its ok??!?!? So confused.
thumbsdown.gif




yums, I agree with gatorcake. I got the program manager's e-mail address from the PA website and sent her some questions yesterday - one was about the dog situation. No response yet. I figured I would wait a day or so and then try to call. I will let you know if I hear anything. Will you let me know if you do?

yums Posted 13 Jul 2011 , 12:27am
post #30 of 38

I sure will. I would love to hear from everyone else what their experiences are, because I seem to be getting nowhere. I will def. find that person and shoot them an email but my inspector flat out told me he never heard of this and he would have to ask his boss, which he did. He said it was misleading because he was told no animals, but thats not what the statement implies. I also think "restricted" is not well enough defined. Restricted could mean putting up a baby gate. And at the end of the application, in section 4 there is a spot to check that says "I do not have any animals in this property at any time" Sorry, just ranting, lol. Please let me know what you find out.

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