Texas Cottage Food Law Catches a Break

Categories: Food News

CupCakesRegister.jpg
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I love bakers. Not because they smell like brown sugar and cinnamon. Or even because they make superhero birthday cakes. Nope. I love bakers because they're scrappy.

Back in June, the state enacted the Cottage Food Law, allowing home bakers to sell their goods under a few guidelines. Within that law, however, was a stipulation that the Texas Department of State Health Services was to create parameters to more narrowly define the labeling of the baked goods. As in, "This was baked in a home kitchen that wasn't inspected by a health department."

In January a subcommittee of the DSHS commission submitted a draft that home bakers contend flew in the face of the law's intent.

The draft rules would have required that labels of home-prepared foods list all ingredients by weight in descending order, allergen information and net weight. They were a blow to bakers who typically lack the resources of commercial bakers (or Nabisco) to create detailed labels for every superhero cake they bake. (Imagine weighing and labeling a five-tier wedding cake.)

In January the DSHS filed the rules in the Texas Register and held a 30-day comment period. Texas bakers used this time to express their great displeasure, as did lawmakers who worked to pass the initial bill, such as state Representative Lois Kolkhorst of Brenham.

Looks like it just might have worked. Yesterday I spoke with Carrie Williams, press officer with the Texas Department of State Health Services about the status of the labeling rules. "We are working on rewrites to the rules, based on comments that we received, to be less prescriptive," Williams said. "After that, we'll send [them to] the Health and Human Services Commission for final adoption and from there, they're filed with the secretary of state. The revised rules should be ready in the next 30 days."

It's not in the bag, but the bakers' voices were heard and they are revisiting the rules. Let's celebrate with cake.



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14 comments
LOS ANGELES FILM SCHOOL
LOS ANGELES FILM SCHOOL

ExxonMobil has a long history of providing financial support to community groups and educational organizations in North Texas, and our employees and retirees volunteer thousands of hours of their time and talent annually to local causes,” said Rex W. Tillerson, chairman and CEO, Exxon Mobil Corporation. “Our employees and retirees have continued a strong tradition of giving in the communities where we live and work.

LOS ANGELES FILM SCHOOL
LOS ANGELES FILM SCHOOL

Thank you for the information you provided. Very nice article. The topic discussed in the article is very fascinating. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Bob
Bob

Who is Kergo and why does Unfair Park allow him to hijack every other thread?

Kergo 1 Spaceship
Kergo 1 Spaceship

Is the cottage law the one where you can build an earthen hut out back, and tell the homeless relative he can live in it....and don't bother us?  Then you tell him drugs do not make a successful person.   But he makes a sculpture of The Kaiser out of doo doo.  

REAL STORY.

Then he tells you the angry sores on his face are the result of a renegade bandsaw.  Then you see him the next day, and his face looks like he sawed a caribou in half?  

That cottage law?

ps-When the poo poo statue of THAT German leader arrived it had Alps made out of bottle shards.  Is that bad?

Then......the next day (is this bad?) said relative breaks into the neighbors house, and steals a credit card-and then buys a chainsaw at Home Depot.

Annabel
Annabel

I wrote an email to Cheryl Wilson of DSHS as well (and received an automated reply). I'm happy that the voices of micro-enterprise owners were heard. Now to the next battle--allowing cottage food producers to sell at farmers' markets!

(You'd think a farmers' market would be a perfect venue for the home baker, wouldn't you? But it's prohibited by the current law.)

Baking--science you can eat!

Higgip64
Higgip64

i would really love it if I would get a response from my letter to Cheryl Wilson.  I wrote mine pretty much right away and have yet to recieve anything back, including a form letter.  I hope that means they've been busy working and rewriting and just haven't had time to respond.  I dont honestly expect to get a personalized letter back but hey, just knowing it might have helped make a difference is a kudo.    thanks for the great report.  We are scrappy - never ever mess with the Kraken.  LOL

primi timpano
primi timpano

 Are you planning a bake sale in the Dallas area?

Mervis
Mervis

All I heard was blah blah blah.

Give us some data on money donated/gifted vs. quarterly or yearly profits.

Thank you. (in howard stern's father's voice)

primi timpano
primi timpano

 I lived in a duplex where the new neighbor tapped into my landline because he wouldn't or couldn't get his own.  A couple of drunken brawls with his wife later and the police dragged his out of there.

An earthen oven bedouin style would be cool and less risky.

Thanks for the chain saw comment.  It reminds me I probably should have a metal door.

Mervis
Mervis

OK, reading under influence of a few 7% IPAs but I am chuckling over this post.

Very David Milch like.

RIP Luck.

Kergo 1 Spaceship
Kergo 1 Spaceship

thank you Mervie......I read that and had to start drinking immediately.

primi timpano
primi timpano

 He's probably the Bob who inspired the Church of the Subgenius.

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