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North Carolina Cottage Food Operations and eCourse

The Foodpreneur Institute is partnering with the Adult Evening Education Program to offer How to Start a Home-based Bakery Micro Course (Live Online). The course will cover not only baked goods but all foods allowed to be processed in North Carolina from a home kitchen.

Low-risk packaged foods are allowed to be produced at home. These can include:
• Baked goods
• Jams and jellies
• Candies
• Dried mixes
• Spices
• Some sauces and liquids
• Pickles and acidified foods

Please contact me at 919-412-9158 if you have any questions about the course. The class starts Monday, January 4, 2021. You may register using this link. Mention “DISCOUNT$50” and receive $50.00 off your registration for How to Start a Home-based Bakery Micro Course (Live Online). Registration ends January 3, 2021.

We will walk you through the process step-by-step of starting your food business.

If starting a home-based bakery is in your 2021 future. The course offers unlimited access and will help you take your products from kitchen to market. There is a private Facebook Group set up for all class participants. You may join it once the course starts on Monday, January 4, 2021.

It is a little known fact that the State of North Carolina is the best cottage food state in the nation. North Carolina has one category of cottage food production. Anyone can become a cottage food producer.

Another Great Read:  AB-626 Microenterprise Home Kitchen Operations

Producers must complete an application for a Home Processing Inspection and be inspected by a Food Regulatory Specialist from the NC Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. There are no limits where cottage food products can be sold and not sales limit. For the right baker, this is a gateway to starting a part-time or full-time baking business.

North Carolina Cottage Foods

Referred to in NC as a home food processing program, the types of foods allowed are endless. According to former U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, local food sales are on the rise.

In fact, U.S. local food sales, including cottage-food sales, have soared from $5 billion annually in 2008 to a projected $20 billion this year.

Much of the locally produced food sold at farmers’ markets is well received. It’s not all about raw produce and agricultural products anymore. Now popular are value-added products. Visit any farmers for baked goods, jams, granola, and other prepared goods.

What are Cottage Foods?

These prepared goods, when made at home or outside a certified commercial kitchen, are commonly called “cottage foods.”

In the past, food safety laws in most states prohibited the sale of cottage foods. But today, non-hazardous foods are permitted. Home processing involves low overhead. And is a great way for food entrepreneurs to test their products.

Another Great Read:  A Cottage Food Story

Food processors can avoid the costly fees associated with using a commercial kitchen. Depending on where you live commercial kitchen fees can cost $25-$30 per hour. And that doesn’t include refrigeration, freezer, and storage use.

Being a home food processor in North Carolina since 2008 opened my eyes to food trends. It also offered insight into the unique way to sell cottage food products.

Cottage foods is a more common term since many of the foods sold are made in a home kitchen. It’s not until production has grown that commercial kitchens become the next step.

Become a Home-based Bakery in North Carolina

In North Carolina the process for becoming a home food processor is easy, yet involved. And as I often tell students, I’ve taught the food processor course since 2008 for the Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, NC, and Wake County Public School Lifelong Learning Program. It’s the business end of the process that new entrepreneurs need to master. The online support portal is housed on Facebook.  Remember, you will have unlimited access to the material. Ask as many questions as needed. Are you ready to start your home-based bakery business? Got questions? Email us at contact@foodpreneurinstitute.com.

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