I have a kitchen that I can rent on a per-use basis that will work great.
What I find interesting is that I seem to be the only person I've met (locally) who knows a hoot about whether or not it's legal to sell cakes from home in this state (it's not), OR cares...I feel like I'm going out of my way to make myself legal, and everyone (customers to kitchen managers) just raises their eyebrows at me when I start in about needing to work out of a commercial kitchen.
NOW that I have the kitchen available, what else am I supposed to "have"?--assuming I'll possibly be the only one who ever knows or cares that I've done all this...I'm thinking at the very least a business license/assumed name/resale # etc. Anything I'm forgetting, in case I ever meet the one person who will actually care that I've jumped through all these hoops..?
Feels like I'm making a bunch of trouble for myself voluntarily when I keep meeting with raised eyebrows and blank looks and the invariable, "HUH?" when I explain what I'm doing and that I can't just bake people a cake for big bucks here at home and drop it off for 200 people at a local convention center!
It does seem like a lot of trouble, but all it takes is one vindictive angry customer to ruin all hope of a successful future in this business. It's like taking out medical insurance....you hope it's never necessary, but at least it's there if you need it. I think you are being smart to do it the legal way. As far as what else you need, I think a call to your state's Dept of Agriculture will fill you in on necessaries.
Insurance-I have been looking into this since my last plan fell through last year. I was told a million in liabilty and equipment. It was reasonable price quote for a years coverage.
I'll have to call the state, and there is a check list I can pick up from our Health Dept here locally too with a list of things you "have to do" if you sell food in this state.
Insurance?---hmm...if I'm working out of another kitchen...what would the insurance need to cover? Has anyone gotten this before?
In case someone sues you for something that had to do with your cake. Such as food poisoning-Not saying that you will poison anyone. But there are some nutty people out there.
I know the feeling about jumping thru all the hoops. I think I have finally finished. Anyway, insurance you are going to need is liability insurance. Mine does not cover the equipment (because the owner of the shops does), but it does cover damage to the property in case of fire. It also covers you in case someone sues you for food poisoning. (surprised the kitchen owner didn't mention this to you).
Ignore the raised eyebrows. This is your safest and best bet.
If you work with event planners, now you can tell them you work in a licensed kitchen. That is good for them because then someone can't sue them for giving their customers a name of a cake decorator that was not licensed. All this little stuff, that seems like it is a hassel will pay in the long run.
Not sure where you are, but I also have to have a permit from the health department, besides a business permit. (And I will be working in a licensed kitchen also.) Of course, to get the health dept. permit, I have to pass a food safety course exam first. I take that today! In IL, a food safety certified person is required to be present whenever food is prepared. Since I'll be working alone, I'm the one who has to be certified. Just another hoop...