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New to all this…

This topic contains 3 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Cathy 3 years, 3 months ago.

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    Abby S.

    Hey y’all,
    So I’ve been trying to look into selling baked goods from home, and I’m trying to find out exactly what I have to do to do that…I ran into this website and read about the cottage food law and I was hoping someone might be able to point me in the right direction. I live in Manassas, Virginia, and I was hoping someone might know who I need to call/contact to find out what I’ll need to do. I just enjoy baking, especially cheesecakes and cakes, and I was hoping to advertise online, and on social media, and just try my hand at selling some of my stuff. Will I need a business license? And how does one go about getting under the cottage food law? Or who do I need to contact to find out what the laws are for Manassas, VA? I know this is alot, sorry! Just figured I’d see if anyone might be able to help me here…I’m really not sure how any of this works…haha…thanks in advance!




    Hi there! I’ve been selling in Virginia for a few years now. VA has some of the most reasonable cottage food laws in the country. If you go to the main Forrager site then go to Virginia, it will give you a very good run down of what you can and cannot do. Long story short, you can sell right away (no license, no inspection) with some restrictions. Essentially, you can sell items deemed “generally safe”. You cannot sell anything requiring refrigeration. For example, American buttercream on cakes is fine, cream cheese frostings are not. You can market yourself online, but all sales must be in person and in VA. No selling across state lines or taking orders via a website.

    If you want to expand into other goods and less restrictions, like cheesecakes, you can apply for a VA Home Food Processing Operation license. This allows you to expand both products and venues. There’s a $40 annual fee, and they do inspect your kitchen and require some training.


    Abby S.

    Ok, well thanks so much for replying and for the information…it was helpful!



    Rachel, where do you sell? From home, at farmers markets, etc?

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