Getting Around Cottage Food Laws In Nyc...

Business By justmikey Updated 14 Nov 2013 , 1:01am by MimiFix

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justmikey Posted 13 Nov 2013 , 11:18pm
post #1 of 4

AI read an article from a NYC cake decorator who had her essay selected for a small business contest. I'm trying to find it again but can't. Anyway in the essay she mentioned that she researched a way to license her business as a catering business because of the small number of cakes she did which allowed her to go around the cottage laws. I'm wondering if anyone here knows more about this. I tried doing some searches online but coming up empty. My sister and I do about 8-10 cakes a month from home and looking to incorporate in the next 30-60 days but we are not financially ready to open a shop or kitchen just yet.


3 replies
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-K8memphis Posted 13 Nov 2013 , 11:37pm
post #2 of 4

don't know about that--but i do know it is dependent on your local authorities--so are you in the same county under all the same jurisdictions as the caterer?  i don't know but you need to start with your local officials--or your sister's because you live in nj right?


i'd be surprised that the same area that does not allow baking from home would allow catering -- i hope you get to prove me wrong--


best of the best to you

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jason_kraft Posted 13 Nov 2013 , 11:45pm
post #3 of 4

AIt's actually very easy to get around cottage food laws, just find commercial kitchen space (there are hourly rental options available in many areas) and get inspected.

I highly doubt a caterer would be allowed to legally operate out of her home unless she built a separate commercial kitchen on her property. Contact your local health dept to find out the rules on this.

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MimiFix Posted 14 Nov 2013 , 1:01am
post #4 of 4

Something doesn't sound right about that caterer's story. The Cottage Food Law in New York allows for limited home processing. That permit does not allow for making/selling cakes directly to the consumer. "This exemption does not allow for home processors to make specialty items, such as birthday cakes, per order. Furthermore, it does not allow for direct sales of product from the home." As Jason suggested, you could rent a commercial kitchen; however, that would be the Article 20 C license which is a commercial license. Additionally, once you incorporate, you will not be eligible for the home processor permit.


If you have any questions, call Ag & Mkt's NYC office (718) 722-2876 

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