Food Safety - Cottage Food/Farmers

Food Safety - Cottage Food/Farmers

A cottage food operation is a person or business preparing or producing cottage food products in the home kitchen of that person’s primary residence, or other designated kitchen or location. Cottage food products are foods that are not sensitive to time and temperature controls. These products may only be sold directly to an end user. This means that these products may not be sold by a third party. Possible locations that these items may be sold are farmers’ markets, roadside stands, and the internet.

Cottage foods include but are not limited to:
  • Fruit jams and jellies
  • Fruit pies
  • Breads
  • Cakes
  • Pastries
  • Cookies
  • Candies and confections Dried fruits
  • Dry herbs
  • Dry seasoning and mixtures
  • Cereals
  • Trail mixes and granola
  • Nuts
  • Vinegar
  • Popcorn and popcorn balls
  • Cotton candy

If sold directly to a customer these items do not require a food license to prepare, but many venues do require that Southeastern Idaho Public Health (SIPH) be contacted to determine if a license is required. To assist with this, you may print and fill out a Cottage Food Risk Assessment Form from our site or at and have it signed by an Environmental Health Specialist at SIPH. The Environmental Health office will accept completed forms that are hand delivered to any of our offices, faxed to 234-7169 or mailed to 1901 Alvin Ricken Drive. Please remember to submit a copy or rendition of your products label with the completed Assessment Form.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (IDHW) will maintain applicable and updated information related to cottage foods. This information may be reviewed at IDHW may add to or delete food products from the list above. Notice of changes and the nature of the changes will be posted on the Food Protection Program’s website.

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