I'm new to posting, but I've been a fan/avid reader of CC for quite some time!
I live in New Jersey, where it is illegal to sell cakes/cookies/etc from home. I know this, and I'm not actively seeking business under the table. My past projects have been given away for free because they've been small and for close friends.
HOWEVER, I have a family friend who wants to me cater her wedding reception. It's 3 weeks away, and she can't find a "professional" who will do it on such short notice. I'm happy to do the order, but it's a huge table spread with a full size cake for 75+ people. I'm not doing it for free. It's going to take WAAAYYY too much time, on top of me working and going to school full time!
My question is, can I charge her if I make the products in her home (where the reception is being held)? Would that get around the "no selling food from home" laws in NJ?
I'd love to hear your thoughts and advice!!
AGenerally there is an exemption for personal chefs, where you do not need to be inspected if you do all your food prep in the customer's kitchen. I would contact your local dept of health for more info.
AIt's still not legal, because you aren't a licensed business.
I give you an A for creativity, though. Lol
Why did she wait 3 weeks before finding a caterer? I know it's a small wedding, but any supermarket...think wegmans...can easily cater with three weeks notice. Sounds like she may possibly be trying to get a sweet deal out of ya.
Original message sent by jason_kraft
Generally there is an exemption for personal chefs, where you do not need to be inspected if you do all your food prep in the customer's kitchen. I would contact your local dept of health for more info.
I've heard of that before. But, I imagine you have to be servsafe certified and have your business registered. Do you think that is something you can do in three weeks ?
I'm kinda looking forward to calling the health depart tomorrow to see what they say. I'm intrigued.
I am SS certified, but I don't have my "business" legal and registered, because I've never sold any of my cakes/cookies. One day!!!! New Jersey is impossible to get certified in, because we don't have a Cottage Food Law passed yet. Apparently she thought I was going to cater this reception from the beginning, but she waited until last minute to contact me/give me details. I guess she wants something homemade and a little fancier than what a supermarket could offer her.
I'll call the health department and see what they say about making the product in her home instead of mine. I'll give you guys an update once I get my answer! Thanks <3
How did this work out? I'm also in NJ and just getting started....