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Cottage Food Laws in Virginia [2024 Update]

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Overview of Guidance and Ordinances for Cottage Food Laws in Virginia

Virginia's cottage food laws, established in 2021, exempt operators from obtaining a Virginia Department of Health food permit due to home kitchen processing exemptions. As per the regulations, these operations are not obliged to fulfill the Virginia food establishment permit application or adhere to specific food handling requirements. However, the necessity for business registration and annual renewal of Virginia business licenses varies based on location and jurisdiction, with local laws dictating potential requirements such as licenses or insurance. These laws permit the production of various foods and baked goods that do not necessitate time or temperature control after preparation.

Food Labeling Requirements according to Virginia Cottage Food Laws

Virginia's cottage food laws permit individuals to prepare certain low-risk foods in their homes for sale directly to consumers. These foods, considered non-potentially hazardous, include items like baked goods, jams, and certain candies. The regulations specify allowable products, sales venues, and annual sales limits, enabling entrepreneurs to operate small-scale food businesses from home.

Summarized Business Regulations for Cottage Food Laws in Virginia

The FDA oversees the safety of food ingredients and materials that come into contact with food, including packaging and cookware. Both direct food additives and those in contact with food must meet safety standards to ensure no harm under their intended use conditions. With a database of nearly 4,000 substances called Substances Added to Food, the FDA assists the industry in meeting safety responsibilities, listing authorized and discontinued ingredients. Manufacturers using new technologies in food production receive pre-market consultation to ensure compliance with safety standards set by the FDA.


Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

This dashboard is provided as an informational resource and is not affiliated with the above department. While we strive to keep our information accurate and up to date, we do not claim to provide official legal advice or representations regarding cottage food laws or any other regulations. Laws and regulations can change frequently, and they can vary significantly by location. We encourage all users to consult their local health department or a legal professional to obtain the most current information and advice specific to their circumstances.

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