Selling Food from Home Texas

Posted by Damian Roberti on

Selling Food from Home Texas



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Selling Food from Home Texas

 In the Lone Star State, what Kinds of Food Can You Sell From Your Home?

Starting on September 1, 2013, if you live in the state of Texas, you will be able to register your home kitchen to create and sell the following culinary products:


baked foods such as breads, cookies, cakes, and pastries that do not need to be refrigerated once they have been baked.
confectionery, including chocolate, toffee, and nut brittle, for example.
both coated and uncoated varieties of nuts.
nut butters that have not been toasted.
Fruit butters
Canning preserves such as jams, jellies, and fruit pies results in the drying out of fruits and vegetables, including beans.
Popcorn, popcorn snacks, and cereals made with popcorn, such as granola.
dry mixes
Pickled cucumbers and onions
mayonnaise, roasted coffee or tea that has been dried out, as well as dried herbs or herb blends.



Selling Food from Home Texas

Choosing an Organizational Form for Your Company

There are a lot of home-based food enterprises that are meant to be on the smaller side. In the state of Texas, the annual revenue that can be made through a home-based food business is capped at $50,000. 

If your company is relatively unimportant, operating it as a single proprietorship can be the only viable option from an economic standpoint. Bear in mind, however, that if you run your business as a sole proprietor, you are personally responsible for every aspect of the company, from paying taxes to soaking up the risks of a lawsuit if your food stuffs cause illness or injury to a customer. This is something you should keep in mind at all times. If you run your business as a sole proprietor, you should protect your personal assets by purchasing liability insurance (see below).



Selling Food from Home Texas

If you have the financial means to do so, you should give some thought to forming a legal structure for your firm that shields you from individual responsibility, such as a limited liability company or corporation in the state of Texas. These types of corporate structures ensure that your food business, and not you personally, will be held liable for any damages in the event that a customer becomes ill or is injured in some other way as a result of using your product.


Selling Food from Home Texas

In Texas, Requirements for Permits and Regulations for Home-Based Food Businesses

In the state of Texas, beginning a food-related business out of your home does not require a permit from the local health authority. In point of fact, unless a consumer makes a complaint, the health department is not allowed to interfere with your cottage food business. This is a legal requirement. (Chapter 437.0192 of the Texas Health and Safety Code)

In order to successfully manage a cottage food business, you are required to adhere to the regulations outlined in the state law governing cottage food, which gives you permission to sell food exclusively from the following locations:

immediately from the comfort of your own home.
by making personal deliveries to individual customers.
at a local municipal, county, or non-profit fair, a farmer's market, farm stand, or other similar event.

Craft fairs and flea markets that are organized by private groups do not allow vendors to sell their wares. You are not allowed to sell in bulk quantities, either via the internet or through the mail.

Selling Food from Home Texas

Selling Food from Home Texas

Obtain a license to handle food in the state of Texas.

In the state of Texas, in order to run a food-related business out of your house, you are required to pass a food safety training course and have a food handler's card. (Chapter 437.0195 of the Texas Health and Safety Code)

In addition to having a permission to handle food, the food that you sell is required to be correctly labeled, packaged in a manner that prevents contamination (there are exceptions for large products like wedding cakes), and packaged in a way that is hygienic. Your labels must include:

The name and address of your homemade food company cottage.
The typical or common term for the item in question.
A mention of any major food allergies that may be present in the product, as well as a statement indicating that the meal was prepared in a private home kitchen and was not inspected by the Department of State Health Services or a local health department.

Selling Food from Home Texas

Insurance for a Food-Related Home-Based Business in Texas

Food businesses are subject to a variety of particular dangers, including the spread of food-borne diseases and the presence of foreign items, such as glass or plastic, in consumers' food. These are in addition to the regular dangers faced by businesses, such as the risk of a fire, theft, or an employee falling while on the job. Do not make the assumption that the homeowners or renters insurance policy you have will cover the activities of your home-based business; it is highly unlikely that it will. You need to conduct a thorough review of your existing policies and then have a discussion with a certified insurance agent about obtaining the additional coverage you'll require. Selling Food from Home Texas

In order to obtain a reliable insurance agency, you should inquire for references from owners of other food businesses. Find an insurance agent who specializes in writing policies for food companies, and make sure that all of the primary risks are covered by the policy. Everything from a staff getting burned by boiling water to a customer getting sick from eating your food should be covered by general business liability insurance.


Selling Food from Home Texas
If you make deliveries or engage in other types of business travel that require the use of a car or truck, you should be sure that vehicle is adequately insured.

Employees Running Home-Based Food Businesses in Texas Have Certain Rights and Obligations With Regard to Taxes and Licenses

In the state of Texas, you are permitted to enlist the assistance of other members of your household in the operation of your cottage food business. You are also permitted to bring on staff members. A food handler's card is something that your staff need to have in order to work if they are not directly overseen by you.