It has passed the Senate and is on its way to the Governor.
Now we just have to hope he will sign it.
He has until June 19th to sign or veto; if he does not veto, it will become law on September 1, 2011.
Here is the text of the bill. Only sections 5 and 6 apply to Cottage Foods: http://www.legis.state.tx.us/tlodocs/82R/billtext/html/SB00081F.htm
In lay terms:
1. Eligible foods are limited to non-potentially hazardous baked goods, canned jams, jellies, and spice mixes.
2. Annual gross income from sales of the above food items must be $50,000 or less.
3. Foods must be sold directly to the consumer. (ie: no wholesale, no re-selling at restaurants, grocery stores, or coffee shops, etc.)
4. The local health department may not regulate these home cottage food operations, but they must maintain a record of any complaint made. This is a consumer safeguard, so that consumers can call the local health department and check for complaints on their cake lady before they purchase, if they wish.
5. The food items sold must be labeled with the name and address of the cottage food production operation, and a statement that the food was made in a kitchen that has not been inspected by the health department.
6. Food must not be sold through the internet. This simply means that these operations cant set up a shopping cart and let people purchase blindly. Our cottage food producers may still have a web site to promote their business. The no-internet-sales clause goes back to the fact that we ARE small cottage operations, and helps ensure that sales are local and face-to-face, which is in keeping with the spirit of the bill. Again, it does NOT mean that web sites are prohibited.