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Rhode Island Can you legally sell food from home in Rhode Island?

Cottage Food Law

Rhode Island essentially has no cottage food laws, because the law they do have is limited to a very select group of individuals. Producing food from home is only available to farmers that sell over $2,500 of agricultural products throughout the year. This excludes most of the small producers that cottage food laws are usually tailored to.

All of the information here is for the “Farm Home Food Manufacture” law, which allows full-scale farmers to add value to their produce by creating certain non-perishable goods, like jams, pies, or candy. The fruits and vegetables that go into the products must be locally grown, though the law doesn’t specify that the farmers themselves need to grow them. The registration process is a little more complicated than most states, but once that’s done, farmers can sell as many of their goods as they want, as long as it’s at a farm-related event or location.

Selling Where can you sell homemade food products?

Roadside stands must be located on the farm, and the only events, markets, and stores that are allowed are ones that are “operated by farmers for the purpose of the retail sale of the products of Rhode Island farms”.

Starting a cottage food business?


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Allowed Foods What food products can you sell from home?

Fruits, vegetables, and herbs grown must be locally grown. The only syrup allowed is maple syrup, and the sap must be sourced from trees that are within a 20 mile radius of the farm.

Only "non-potentially hazardous" foods are allowed, but certain non-PHFs may not be allowed. Most foods that don't need to be refrigerated (foods without meat, cheese, etc.) are considered non-potentially hazardous. Learn more

Limitations How will your home food business be restricted?

There is no sales limit

Pets must be kept out of the kitchen at all times, even when not preparing food.

Business What do you need to do to sell food from home?


Registration is only available for full-scale farmers that sell at least $2,500 of agricultural products every year.  Farmers must register for an annual license, which costs $65.

Private well testing

If the farm uses a private water supply, it must be tested annually, which would incur an extra fee.

Although a kitchen inspection isn’t required, the home must be checked by a building official to see that it passes the minimum housing standards.

Every product must be standardized, and a recipe for each one, including processing procedures, must always be kept in the kitchen.

Labeling How do you label cottage food products?

Sample Label

Forrager Cookie Company

123 Chewy Way, Cookietown, RI 73531

Phone: (123) 456-7890

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)

Workplace Are there any home kitchen requirements?

There are a number of kitchen requirements to adhere to, which can be found in the law in 21-27-6.1(1 & 2).

Resources Where can you find more information about this law?

Law Dates
September 2002
Title 21-27-6.1

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Starting a cottage food business?


How To Start A Cottage Food Business

Rhode Island Forum Got questions? Join the discussion

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This forum contains 2 topics and 2 replies, and was last updated by  David Crabill 7 years, 3 months ago.

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Hi I extract milk from coconuts in my home and I wanted to sell coconut milk, coconut oil, and coconut flour, at a farmers market, how could I go about that? If I can?

Hi David nice to be on your site. I live in Rhode island. I am a former chef and personal chef. I love cooking and backing. I’m not interested in selling the food I make or bake but would like to give it away to those who are hungry. I’ve been a volunteer in soup kitchens, homeless shelters and prison chaplaincy. How can I go about this? And/ or how would I go about selling or giving for charities/fundraising? I would like nothing more than make food in my home kitchen and give it away like I said. Can you help me with this?

I recently was visiting Newport RI and went to a small gym where they sold home made jelly. I got home and found a hair in it when the jar was half empty. I was very upset. How do I file a complaint?

Hi. Where do I start researching if our family wanted to sell barbeque road side? We used to own and run a restaurant in 2008 when my husband got out of the military but we had a building. Now I was just thinking pitching a tent road side maybe on weekends and special event times. Thank you in advance.

I’m growing organic wheatgrass and juicing in my home. I want to sell the juice ‘shots’ to stores and to retail customers. Can I do this?

I want to make and sell chocolate truffles for christmas. I would make it in my home kitchen and would sell them on etsy. I am allowed to to that?

If recipes for canning relishes and pickles were sent to and approved by Cornell University could they then be approved to be sold at Farmers Markets?

    I’m not sure what the ag or health dept requires to approve certain canned foods. Assuming you are a qualifying farmer who can use this law, you should contact the ag dept to learn about their testing requirements.

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