All You NEED Is A Kitchen...
HOME BAKING PROFITS WATCH VIDEO!

All You NEED Is A Kitchen...

HOME BAKING PROFITS
WATCH VIDEO!

Oklahoma Cottage Food Laws

Oklahoma cottage food laws make it easy to get started. Oklahoma does limit or cap your annual sales but getting started is as simple as saying, “I’m a cottage food entrepreneur!”

HOW TO START YOUR COTTAGE FOOD BUSINESS IN OKLAHOMA – LICENSING

Cottage Food Laws - Home Baking Profits

To start your cottage food business in Oklahoma, simply follow these steps:

STEPS TO START

Always contact your local city / county office and verify if a business license is required prior to starting.

This is simply done by calling the main number to your city and letting them know you are starting a cottage food business and ask if you need a business license.

  1. Pick foods to offer from the “allowed” food types listed below.
  2. Check with your local city/county for any zoning restrictions
  3. Get your sales tax license – Only if planning sales a farmers market
  4. Get labels made (see label example below)
  5. Start baking/cooking, marketing and selling

FIND AN ERROR – GET A SPECIAL GIFT

If you find an error, omission, mistake, broken link, any outdated information or an addition that we missed – simply email me at [email protected] a link to the page and any information and I’ll send you something awesome.

OKLAHOMA COTTAGE FOOD LAWS – Foods That Are Allowed

  • Bagels
  • Biscuits
  • Breads
  • Brownies
  • Cake pops
  • Cakes
  • Cookies
  • Cupcakes
  • Doughnuts
  • Muffins
  • Perishable baked goods such as custard filled pies – refrigeration required
  • Pizzelles
  • Rolls
  • Scones
  • Sweet breads
  • Tortillas
  • Wedding cakes
  • Cones
  • Danish
  • Other Pastries
  • Pies
  • Crackers & Pretzels
  • Granola

If the food item(s) you wish to make aren’t on this list, you can contact your local Agriculture Extension Office and make sure it is one of the non-potentially hazardous foods.

Real Life Cottage Food Entrepreneurs and Opportunities

OKLAHOMA COTTAGE FOOD LAWS – PROHIBITED FOODS

  • Candy
  • Jams & jellies
  • Acidified foods
  • Low-acid canned foods
  • Fruit butters
  • Other Preserves
  • Nuts & seeds
  • Popcorn
  • Chocolate-covered items
  • Candied apples
  • Dry goods
  • Cereals
  • Dried fruit
  • Dried vegetables
  • Pasta noodles
  • Spices & Seasonings
  • Coffee beans
  • Tea leaves
  • Pickles
  • Salsas
  • Sauces
  • Syrups
  • Nut butters
  • Ketchup
  • Mustards
  • Oils
  • Vinegars
  • Fermented foods
  • Extracts
  • Juices
  • Carbonated drinks
  • Kombucha
  • Hardboiled whole eggs
  • Meat jerkies

NOTE: Although eggs, milk and dairy products are not allowed, used as ingredients for the allowed foods – is acceptable.

Many prohibited foods that are baked or cooked into the allowed foods are rendered harmless (non-TCS) and therefore allowed.

OKLAHOMA ANNUAL SALES LIMITS

Most states set a cap on what you’re allowed to make annually.

This is usually put in place to push you towards opening a full-fledged retail business while at the same time letting you start from home.

Oklahoma sets this limit at $20,000 per year. Hardly enough to use to grow and expand and many don’t report accurately in order to save up to expand into a licensed business.

Below is what the state of Colorado puts out to help folks wanting to go beyond cottage foods.

Colorado created a brochure on going beyond cottage food once you’ve outgrown or hit your maximum allowed income.

I have provided it here for a resource as you grow your business and wish to expand.

Cottage Food Laws - Example on how to grow your business

ACIDITY LEVELS AND TESTING

Most states determine if a food is non-potentially hazardous by the acidity level found in the food. The higher the acidity, the more stable at a range of temps, that food product is.

For example: milk is low acidity and requires temperature controls.

The acidity of foods is measured by pH.

• The range of pH is commonly considered to extend from zero to 14. A pH value of 7 is neutral because pure water has a pH value of exactly 7.

Values less than 7 are considered acidic, while those greater than 7 are considered basic or alkaline.

• All fruits are acidic foods and are usually tart and sour. Ex: tomato, lemon, peach, apple, etc.

• The FDA rule for acidic foods states that a food must have a pH below 4.6 to be sold as a minimally processed food

• The reason for this is bacteria does not grow at this level of acidity.

• The exclusion shall not be construed as allowing the sale of low acid foods (pH > 4.6) i
hermetically sealed containers (i.e. home-canned green beans, peas, etc.) when such
food is not prepared in a permitted establishment.

TESTING

Some states require testing if the pH level is unknown.

For many food products, the pH level is already known. You can test for pH yourself using a pH spear tester. (make sure it is made for food and has a long spear tip).

Oklahoma State University shares an awesome guide for selecting the correct tester for foods and liquids which includes tips and tricks for operation and maintenance. Get The Guide Here.

OKLAHOMA COTTAGE FOOD LAWS LABELING REQUIREMENTS

The basic information that must be on the label is as follows:

Any “prepared food” sold by a “home food establishment” must have a label affixed, when possible, to the product containing the following information:

  • Name and address of the home food establishment.

  • Name of the prepared item.

  • The statement: “Made in a home food establishment that is not licensed by the State Department of Health” in at least a 10-point font and in a color that provides clear contrast to the back-ground of the label.

  • If a label is not easily affixed to the packaging of the bakery item, a free-standing label may be placed by the product or placed on the receipt.

COTTAGE FOOD LABEL EXAMPLE

Below is an example of what Oklahoma requires on their labels.

Oklahoma Cottage Food Laws - Labeling example

Using VistaPrint.com or similar – you can quickly create professional labels that not only serve to meet the state cottage food guidelines but also serve for marketing your awesome business and products.

You’ll find some fantastic examples of this from members inside VendorsUnited.com

ALLERGENS ON LABELING

The FDA lists eight (8) major food allergens. Listing any of these on your label is a smart business practice and will certainly help your customers choose a product.

  • Milk.
  • Eggs.
  • Fish (e.g., bass, flounder, cod)
  • Crustacean shellfish (e.g., crab, lobster, shrimp)
  • Tree nuts (e.g., almonds, walnuts, pecans)
  • Peanuts.
  • Wheat.
  • Soybeans

Simply add to your label: “CONTAINS: SOYBEANS” Some go as far to announce that a certain allergen is used in the same kitchen.

Some states require you list any potential allergens and potential for any cross contamination even if the allergen is not used in the recipe.

FDA Allergen Labeling Example: Contains Wheat, Milk, Egg, and Soy

WHERE CAN I SELL MY COTTAGE FOOD PRODUCTS

Oklahoma Cottage Food Laws – Sales Rules

  • Farmers markets; 

    • According to the Oklahoma State Department of Health, a “farmers market is defined as a designated area in which farmers, growers or producers from a defined region gather on a regularly scheduled basis to sell at retail non-potentially hazardous farm food products and whole shell eggs to the public.

      Some, not all, farmers markets re-quire that a portion of the raw food ingredients used by the individual vendor to produce a product must have been grown or raised by the vendor.

      Check your farmers market requirements. (Individual vendors wishing to process food, as defined by Oklahoma Good Manufacturing Practices regulations (Chapter 260), must obtain a state food pro-cessor’s license.)

    • Gift shops, craft fairs, road-side stands, are not a farmers market, and therefore, are not venues of sale under the Home Baking Act

  • On site, meaning your “primary residence.”

  • Cooperatives (such as the Oklahoma Food Cooperative).

  • Membership-based buying clubs (for example a local “Dessert of the Month Club”).

Inside kitchenincome.com you can find out how cottage food entrepreneurs are getting sales faster than they can make the food.

FOOD HANDLER TRAINING AND BEST PRACTICES

Oklahoma does NOT require you take a food safety course.

However, knowing the safe handling practices will protect you and your customers, it is always a good idea to take a quick online class and get certified.

There are many short courses you can take online and actually get certified and be able to share that with your customers.

Many of our VendorsUnited.com members our proud to display their food safety certificates as a way to insure their customers that they care. This helps your business.

SAFE PRACTICES

Much of this may seem like common sense, but even if you already know, it’s a good idea to remind yourself with a list of things that can prevent you from missing something small.

And if for no other reason… CYA! CYA = Cover Your A#%

CLEAN WORK AREA / WORK SPACE / SANITIZATION

Providing safe to eat foods from your kitchen – starts in your kitchen.

Keep your area clean and sanitized to avoid cross contamination and to insure you provide your customers and clients with the safest and best foods they can get.

The following are some “common” sense things you can do to insure the best environment for preparing foods to sell:

  • ​Keep all equipment and surface areas clean and sanitized

  • Make sure window and door screens are bug proof with no gaps

  • Keep ingredients separate to prevent cross contamination / e.g. raw eggs near flour

  • No pets in work area and preferably none in the home

  • Allow no-one with a cold, sniffles or sick in kitchen while preparing foods

  • Wipe down walls and clean floors daily

  • Use good lighting to avoid missing unclean areas

  • Keep window and door screens in good repair to keep insects out

  • Wash hands frequently while working and use food grade gloves for extra safety

  • Keep areas of food storage and equipment storage clean and sanitized

RECORD KEEPING

Why keep these types of records?
Let’s say the inspector calls you and says they got a report that your banana bread, someone purchased, made them sick.

You’ll be able to show that you didn’t even make banana bread that week and that the person who reported you, bought that 4 weeks ago and you weren’t even the one that sold it to him.

This does not need to be complicated. I love my yellow legal pads and they make an inexpensive tool for keeping up with the following:

  • The recipes you use including ingredients

  • The process you use to prepare that specific recipe: (can be just like recipe instructions)

  • Date made (can be coded for your own use only if your state doesn’t require the production date) e.g. Made 12.22.29 = 292212

  • Date sold (you can have a batch code to help track a certain batch) Simply write down date you sold an item

  • Location sold is another great piece of information to keep track of

  • Sales receipts are something great to keep for a couple of reasons and over at KitchenIncome.com I dive into the best practices, best systems and best methods for tracking, managing, selling and shipping.

COTTAGE FOOD lIABILITY INSURANCE

We live in a society that likes to sue. I can sue you for wearing that color shirt. No kidding!

Of course I probably won’t win, but at the very least, it’s gonna cause you stress and some costs.

Liability insurance is a MUST.

It can be expensive – but several years ago, I found FLIP and by far, they gave me the most protection (coverage) and allow you to run your cottage food business without fear of being sued.

WHY? Because they provide the lawyers. And their lawyers… they are good!

Of course you should price shop around with your local agent or a national brand company, but rest assured, I’ve done all the legwork for you.

Alternatively, some folks opt to get bonded. You’ve heard the saying before: “licensed and bonded”.

A bond is usually provided from an insurance bonding company or your own insurance company. My first time, I got a bond at State Farm.

A bond is expensive comparatively but is less out of pocket in the beginning. Of course, it’s way, way less insurance / coverage too.

A $10,000 bond may cost $50 annually while a $2,000,000.00 liability policy may cost a few hundred a year.

No matter what you decide… knowing you’re insured against frivolous lawsuits is worth every penny.

OKLAHOMA COTTAGE FOOD LAWS IMPORTANT LINKS

OKLAHOMA COTTAGE FOOD CONTACT INFO

Oklahoma State University
139 Agricultural Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078 
(405) 744-5398 
(614) 728-6250

MAP AND CONTACTS FOR YOUR COUNTY AG EXTENSION

UPDATES TO OKLAHOMA COTTAGE FOOD LAWS

From time to time, links, info, rules and numbers change, are updated or made obsolete.

Although I spend time daily with hundreds of vendors (many of which are cottage food businesses) – I can miss an update.

If you find a broken link, outdated information or any other issue… please let me know and I’ll send you a special gift for helping me maintain the best site on the internet for the cottage food industry.

My goal has always been to have a central place that is absolutely free those starting out or existing entrepreneurs who use their homes and kitchens to make real incomes.

Please send to [email protected] / or post inside the private VendorsUnited.com group.

Need more resources? Check it out HERE (Helpful Resources)

Take a peek at the best vendors on the planet, the community that rocks the food vending world: Vendors United

Vendors United - Cottage Food Laws

Disclaimer

This information is provided to help those interested in starting a cottage food business. It is not a document made by the state government. This information is not provided as law nor should be construed as law. Always use the contact information for each state to confirm compliance and any changes.

Did we help you? Help us to share this information…

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.