For many years, only Kentucky farmers could sell homemade food, leaving it as one of the last states without a basic cottage food law. But that changed in 2018 when the law was amended (HB 263) to make it available to everyone.
With this law, home-based processors can make many types of non-perishable foods and sell them directly at local venues, or online. With no sales limit, registration, permit, or required training, it is very easy for residents to use this law to sell their homemade food.
As of 2019, the state is still working on regulations to clarify some aspects about this law, like which foods are specifically allowed. The new regulations should eventually be provided on this FCS Extension page. You can also look for updates on the website and Facebook page of Kentucky Home Bakers — both resources that were started by the pioneer of this bill (Jennifer Lopez).
You can produce standard fruit jams, jellies, preserves, and fruit butters. If you want to sell low-sugar, low-acid, or acidified canned foods (e.g. canned tomatoes, low-sugar jams, green beans, salsa, BBQ sauce, pickles, etc), and you grow the primary ingredient in them (e.g. you grow the tomatoes for canned tomatoes), you can become a home-based microprocessor. For more information about allowed foods, see the table on page 76 of the Farmers Market Manual. You can sell up to 60 dozen eggs per week. For more information about labeling and special requirements, see pages 77 – 85 of the Farmers Market Manual. You can sell up to 150 gallons of honey per year. For more information about labeling and special requirements, see pages 86 – 88 of the Farmers Market Manual. You can sell homemade pet food in Kentucky, but you must register (and pay an annual fee) and follow special labeling requirements. For more information, see page 93 of the Farmers Market Manual.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
"This product is home-produced and processed" (10-point type)
Forrager Cookie Company
123 Chewy Way, Cookietown, KY 73531
Ingredients: enriched flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), butter (cream, salt), semi-sweet chocolate (sugar, chocolate, cocoa butter, milkfat, soy lecithin, natural flavors), brown sugar, granulated sugar, eggs, vanilla extract (vanilla bean extract, alcohol, sugar), baking soda, salt (salt, calcium silicate)
Produced on 10/1/2020
NET WT 2 lb 4 oz (1.02 kg)
You can find more information about product labels in the labeling requirements guide.
Your home kitchen can have no more than two non-commercial ranges, ovens, or double-ovens, and no more than three refrigerators. The local health department is able to inspect your kitchen annually, but they are not required to do so.