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selling homemade vanilla extract

This topic contains 6 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Dominic 4 years, 6 months ago.

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    loretta eitens

    I have about 2 dozen bottles of homemade vanilla extract. I want to sell at locate crafts sales, my yard sale no more. What requirements do I need? Do my labels have to have the ingredients, my address posted somewhere on it?


    David Crabill

    You need to check with your ag dept to see if you can sell homemade vanilla extract (I don’t think you can). If you can’t, then you’ll just need to give them away if you don’t want to break the law.



    Loretta, I am too wanting to sell vanilla extract and possibly other extracts. Did you find any information or contacts to ask?



    Here is what the FDA has to say on the matter, I’ve been doing research because I also wish to do this and as far as I can tell, if you follow this you should be fine.

    [Code of Federal Regulations]
    [Title 21, Volume 2]
    [Revised as of April 1, 2015]
    [CITE: 21CFR169.175]


    Subpart B–Requirements for Specific Standardized Food Dressings and Flavorings

    Sec. 169.175 Vanilla extract.
    (a) Vanilla extract is the solution in aqueous ethyl alcohol of the sapid and odorous principles extractable from vanilla beans. In vanilla extract the content of ethyl alcohol is not less than 35 percent by volume and the content of vanilla constituent, as defined in 169.3(c), is not less than one unit per gallon. The vanilla constituent may be extracted directly from vanilla beans or it may be added in the form of concentrated vanilla extract or concentrated vanilla flavoring or vanilla flavoring concentrated to the semisolid form called vanilla oleo-resin. Vanilla extract may contain one or more of the following optional ingredients:

    (1) Glycerin.

    (2) Propylene glycol.

    (3) Sugar (including invert sugar).

    (4) Dextrose.

    (5) Corn sirup (including dried corn sirup).

    (b)(1) The specified name of the food is “Vanilla extract” or “Extract of vanilla”.

    (2) When the vanilla extract is made in whole or in part by dilution of vanilla oleoresin, concentrated vanilla extract, or concentrated vanilla flavoring, the label shall bear the statement “Made from ___” or “Made in part from ___”, the blank being filled in with the name or names “vanilla oleoresin”, “concentrated vanilla extract”, or “concentrated vanilla flavoring”, as appropriate. If the article contains two or more units of vanilla constituent, the name of the food shall include the designation “_-fold”, the blank being filled in with the whole number (disregarding fractions) expressing the number of units of vanilla constituent per gallon of the article.

    (3) Wherever the name of the food appears on the label so conspicuously as to be easily seen under customary conditions of purchase, the labeling required by paragraph (b)(2) of this section shall immediately and conspicuously precede or follow such name, without intervening written, printed, or graphic matter.

    (c) Label declaration. Each of the ingredients used in the food shall be declared on the label as required by the applicable sections of parts 101 and 130 of this chapter.

    [42 FR 14479, Mar. 15, 1977, as amended at 58 FR 2886, Jan. 6, 1993]

    In plain English:
    “13.35 ounces of vanilla beans per gallon of extract is single fold (single strength) vanilla extract. As most vanilla beans are ~120/pound or 7.5 beans per ounce of weight. A gallon of extract is 128 fluid ounces, so that would mean ~98 beans per gallon or SIX (6) whole beans to make ONE cup (8 fluid ounces) of single fold vanilla extract…Anyone who tells you any differently is just teaching you how to make vanilla flavored booze.” kieth –

    Take that point to heart! Recipes on the web are all over the place: some call for 1 bean in a gallon of brandy left for one year, others call for 2-4 beans per cup with 1-6 months soak time. Few come anywhere close to reaching the ‘legal’ requirements of an extract.



    David Crabill

    Ryan, thanks for posting that info. Just in case it’s not clear to someone reading this, that info provides a definition for vanilla extract, but you’d still need to contact your ag or health dept to determine the licensing required to sell it.



    Hi I contacted the Minnesota Ag. department and I was informed over the phone that it is acceptable to sell Vanilla Extract in Minnesota AS LONG AS it meets the federal requirements for true vanilla extract as listed above. Selling ‘Vanilla flavored booze’ and calling it vanilla extract is the illegal part. So make sure you also list it as single fold. If it is double fold list it accordingly, etc.



    There are also specific rules to follow listed here.

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