Can I cook & supply food from my home?

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Asked on January 22, 2019 in Food.
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In the US, you would generally need a business license to have a catering business. You would also need an inspection of the kitchen, and in-home kitchens would rarely qualify, for health reasons; you would generally need a commercial kitchen. You and any employees would have to pass tests of your knowledge about food safety, and have a clean health record. You would have to be able to charge customers a sales tax, in addition to the purchase price of their orders, and keep detailed records so that the state would be able to verify that you sent in the correct amount of tax. You would need to be familiar with state laws regarding hiring and paying employees.

Now, if you were just providing catering for a few close friends, you would not need all these things. As an example, the 16 year old daughter of a friend likes to bake, and when she has time, between school and other commitments, she sells homemade bagels, various types of bread, and occasional specialty items to relatives and friends. She did not need to be licensed, as she serves only a handful of families and bakes only episodically. Her operation is simply a sophisticated version of a child’s lemonade stand.

Answered on January 24, 2019.
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