Did you know there are two versions of cottage food requirements in Kentucky? Both versions allow home preparation of food.

2 Versions of Cottage Foods in Kentucky

One is for Kentucky farmers. They can produce acidified and low acid foods. They have to grow some of the produced used in their canned products. This is the home-based microprocessing program.

The other is for Kentucky residents is limited to producing only products on the allowable foods list.

Home-based processors may produce and sell any of the following lower-risk products:

  • Whole fruits and vegetables
  • Dried or freeze-dried fruits and vegetables
  • Mixed greens
  • Fruit jams, jellies, and preserves (this does not include low and/or no-sugar varieties and pepper jellies)
    Fruit butters
  • Sweet sorghum syrup
  • Maple syrup
  • BreadCookies
  • Cakes
  • Candy (no alcohol)
  • Fruit pies
  • Pecan pies
  • Dried herbs and spices
  • Dried grains
  • Nuts
  • Granola
  • Trail or snack mix
  • Popcorn with or without added seasonings

There are no fees for becoming a home-based processor. The Kentucky Cabinet for Health Services, Food Safety Branch requires a form to be completed. This program is called home-based processing.

The Kentucky Department for Public Health, Food Safety Branch administers both programs.

2 Versions of Cottage Food Home-based Processing

The home-based food processing programs in Kentucky predates a number of the Cottage Food laws and home-based food processor programs recently passed. In Kentucky, the program is not referred to as Cottage Foods. There are two Home-based Processing Programs. However, many folks may refer to this as Cottage Foods in Kentucky because the term Cottage Foods is most familiar to those to sell food from their home kitchen.

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Kentucky signed House Bill 391 into law on November 1, 2003. The Bill created creates some exceptions to food manufacturing requirements. This was considered “visionary legislation” at that time. It allowed Kentuckians to sell home-processed products in certain locations if the final product contains a primary or predominant Kentucky-grown ingredient grown, harvested, and processed by the farmer. HB 391 addresses only horticultural or agronomic food ingredients. The regulations allow foods to be sold ONLY from:
• Approved farmers markets
• The processor’s farm
• Certified roadside stands

Foods prohibited include but are not limited to crème-filled pies, meringues, custards, cheesecake, raw seed sprouts, garlic-in-oil mixtures, vacuum-packaged foods, baby food, and products containing meat, poultry, or fish. Registrations and certifications are nontransferable and are available in two categories:

• Home-based Processor (Kentucky residents)
• Home-based Microprocessor (Farmers)

2 Versions of Cottage Foods in Kentucky – Labeling Requirements

Here are the labeling requirements for selling your cottage food products in the State of Kentucky.

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The following information shall be included on the label of each food product:

  • The common or usual name of the food product.
  • The name and address of the home-based processing operation, including the street address, city, state, and zip code.
  • The ingredients of the food product. Ingredients shall be in descending order of predominance by weight.
  • The net weight or volume of the food product by standard measure or numerical count.
    The following statement in 10-point type: “This product is home-produced and processed.”
    The date the product was processed.
  • Allergen identification for all ingredients that contain any of the Major Food Allergens known as The Big Allergens: milk, eggs, wheat, soybean (soy), peanuts, tree nuts, fish and shellfish.

Take a look at a sample label using this link. Remember, you must post the following disclaimer on each product you sell. “This product was home-produced and processed.” Don’t forget to include the date the product was produced.

Resource Links to  the 2 Versions of Cottage Foods in Kentucky

Home-based Processing and Microprocessing

Learn what The Food Safety Branch of the Department for Public Health has to say about home-based food processing and food safety.

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