Are you interested in starting a home-based food business in Florida? Then you need to know about the cottage food laws.

These regulations govern what you can sell, how to label and package your products, and the guidelines for selling and distributing them.

In this article, we will give you an overview of the cottage food laws in Florida, so you can navigate the licensing and permitting process with ease.

Key Takeaways

  • Florida’s Cottage Food Laws allow individuals to sell certain non-potentially hazardous food items from their homes.
  • Permitted food products include baked goods, jams and jellies, honey and beeswax, and dried herbs and spices.
  • Cottage food products can only be sold directly to consumers and not through retail stores or online platforms.
  • To sell cottage food products in Florida, a Cottage Food Operation (CFO) license is required, along with compliance with food safety and labeling requirements.

Overview of Florida’s Cottage Food Laws

If you’re considering starting a cottage food operation in Florida, it’s important to understand the regulations surrounding home-based businesses.

Florida’s Cottage Food Laws allow individuals to prepare and sell certain non-potentially hazardous food items from their homes.

However, there are restrictions on the types of products that can be sold and where they can be sold. Cottage food operations must comply with labeling requirements and are prohibited from selling their products online or to wholesale distributors.

Additionally, there are limitations on annual gross sales and the location of the business.

It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with these laws to ensure that your home-based business operates within the legal boundaries of Florida’s Cottage Food Laws.

Permitted Food Products

You can sell certain non-potentially hazardous food items from your home in Florida, as long as they comply with the regulations and restrictions outlined in the Cottage Food Laws. These laws aim to ensure food safety while promoting home-based businesses.

Here are four types of permitted food products you can sell:

  1. Baked goods: This includes cookies, cakes, bread, and pastries. However, cream-filled or custard-filled baked goods aren’t allowed.
  2. Jams and jellies: You can sell these fruit-based spreads, as long as they don’t require refrigeration.
  3. Honey and bee-related products: If you’re a beekeeper, you can sell your honey, beeswax, and other related products.
  4. Dry herbs and spices: Selling dried herbs and spices is permitted, as long as they aren’t mixed with any potentially hazardous ingredients.

Remember to follow the specific labeling requirements and other guidelines set by the Cottage Food Laws to ensure food safety and compliance with the regulations.

Labeling and Packaging Requirements

Make sure to comply with the Cottage Food Laws’ labeling and packaging requirements to ensure your products meet the necessary standards for food safety and regulatory compliance.

When it comes to labeling regulations, there are a few key points to keep in mind. First, your product label must include the name of the product, your business name and address, and the net weight or volume of the product. Additionally, you must clearly indicate that the product is homemade and not prepared in a licensed commercial kitchen.

As for packaging guidelines, it’s important to use clean and sanitary containers that are suitable for the specific product. Make sure the packaging is secure and properly sealed to maintain product freshness and prevent contamination.

Selling and Distribution Guidelines

When selling and distributing your cottage food products in Florida, it’s essential to understand and follow the guidelines set forth by the Cottage Food Laws. To ensure compliance and a smooth selling process, here are some important considerations:

  1. Selling restrictions:

Florida’s Cottage Food Laws restrict selling cottage food products only directly to consumers. Sales through third parties like retail stores or online platforms aren’t permitted.

  1. Sales tax considerations:

As a cottage food operator, you may be required to collect and remit sales tax on your products. It’s advisable to consult with the Florida Department of Revenue to understand your specific obligations.

  1. Proper labeling:

While discussed in a previous subtopic, it’s crucial to mention that accurate and clear labeling is essential to comply with selling and distribution guidelines. Ensure your product labels meet all the required information and adhere to the guidelines provided by the Cottage Food Laws.

  1. Venue restrictions:

Certain venues, such as farmers markets or roadside stands, may have specific requirements or permits that you need to obtain before selling your cottage food products there. Research and comply with any additional regulations that apply to your chosen selling venues.

Licensing and Permitting Process

To begin the licensing and permitting process for selling cottage food products in Florida, you’ll need to obtain a Cottage Food Operation (CFO) license from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS). The licensing process is relatively straightforward and involves submitting an application, paying a fee, and meeting certain food safety requirements.

In order to obtain the CFO license, you must ensure that your cottage food products are non-potentially hazardous and are labeled properly. You must also comply with specific labeling requirements, such as including a statement that the product was made in a cottage food operation and listing any allergens present. Additionally, you may be required to take a food safety training course.

Once you have obtained the CFO license, you’re allowed to sell your cottage food products directly to consumers, but there are limitations on where you can sell and how much you can earn annually.


So, if you’re looking to start a cottage food business in Florida, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the state’s laws and regulations. Make sure you choose products that are allowed under these laws, and follow the labeling and packaging requirements.

When it comes to selling and distributing your products, be sure to comply with the guidelines set by Florida’s cottage food laws.

Lastly, don’t forget to obtain the necessary licenses and permits before starting your business.

Good luck!

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