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States Now Outlawing … Homemade Pie Sales

States now outlawing homemade pie sales

Image source: Amish365

Selling homemade pies, cakes and cookies would no longer be illegal in New Jersey under a bill that unanimously passed the state Assembly.

“This is a simple, common sense solution as it will allow individuals to earn extra money through the sale of their home-baked [1] goods … without incurring significant overhead costs,” State Assemblywoman Alison McHose (R-Sussex), the sponsor of bill, A-1244, told The Star-Ledger newspaper.

Currently, it is illegal to sell baked goods that were not prepared in a state-inspected kitchen in New Jersey. That law effectively prevents people from selling items made in their kitchens at fairs, farmers’ markets, church bake sales and other public venues.

New Jersey is one of five states with no cottage food [2] law, although several other states nationwide have laws that are considered unfriendly to the industry, according to CottageFoods.org.

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For instance, Oklahoma doesn’t allow the sale of goods with fresh fruit. Cottage food refers to homemade food sold to the public commercially.  Only 20 states have laws that don’t “arbitrarily limit how much home bakers can earn,” according to the Institute for Justice.

What A-1244 Allows

A-1244 [4] is being hailed as a victory for the cottage-food industry in the Garden State. Here’s what A-1244 does:

“New Jersey is one of just five states that do not yet have cottage food laws,” an Institute for Justice press release noted. “Under the state’s current regime, it’s illegal for people to sell food they make at home. Instead, they must either rent space at a shared commercial kitchen or install a commercial kitchen in their homes, which can be prohibitively expensive.”

The legal rights organization has sued the state of Minnesota over a law that limits home bakers to just $5,000 worth of baked [5] goods a year.

Expansion of Economic Freedom

Cottage food laws

Image source: Dallas Observer

McHose sees expanding cottage food as an issue of economic freedom to help families survive tough times.

“In today’s difficult economy, it’s important that we look for opportunities to help people supplement their incomes,” she told The Star-Ledger.

A-1244 will still have to pass the state Senate and be signed by the governor to become law. If that happens, New Jersey will be one of a number of states expanding cottage food business opportunities [6] for citizens.

Other states that have expanded such opportunities include:

Despite the expansion of food freedom, states still have ridiculous restrictions on cottage food. The Institute for Justice noted that in Mississippi, it is still illegal for home bakers to advertise their products online.

What do you think of cottage food laws? Tell us in the comments section below.

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