Monday, January 28, 2013

Regulatory Kickstarter

Image via Wikipedia

The Christian Science Monitor has a report that California has joined thirty other states in encouraging micro-businesses.
Late last month, the California State Assembly passed new legislation that would assure legal status for small-scale cottage industries that sell baked goods and other "non-potentially hazardous" food items produced in home kitchens.
We're talking homemade cookies and brownies, jams, jellies, fruit pies, mixed nuts, flavored vinegars, dried teas, roasted coffee, and other yummy stuff that's already legal in more than 30 other states including Oregon, Washington, Texas, and Michigan, which have similar legislation in place.
Freshly signed by the governor last Friday, the California Homemade Food Act (AB1616) clears the way for home cooks in the world's eighth-largest economy to make and sell a wide range of products without the need to invest in commercial kitchen space or comply with the zoning and regulatory measures that govern larger producers and producers of meat and dairy products, specifically omitted from this law.

Gotta say, this makes me very happy. Locally we have an enormous number of fruits and berries growing on public property. Being able to buy jams and jellies and vinegars and such made within a couple of blocks of both where I live and where the fruit grew would be lovely. We bought honey last year that had been gathered within a mile of our house (the bees probably used the flowers in our yard). This is an excellent way to both make the food system more resilient and to give people a sense of community.

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