Cake Central › Cake Forums › Cake Talk › Cake Decorating Business › Texas Becoming Legal
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Texas Becoming Legal - Page 4

Poll Results: How Passionate are you about Texas becoming Legal?

 
  • 84% (154)
    VERY Passoniate! I'll write my representative!
  • 13% (25)
    I'd like to see it happen, but I'm okay either way
  • 2% (4)
    I really don't care. I have no interest in selling my cakes.
183 Total Votes  
post #46 of 347
I live in Southeast Houston, in the Clear Lake area. I would love to be able to open my own bakery but I am a MOTHER first. Even if my husband weren't out of town so much, I would still not want to take the time and energy I would have to put into a bakery away from my children. They need me at home. I decorate cakes for friends and family all the time and only charge for the ingredients. They all always pay me extra and every one of them gripes at me about not charging enough and not passing out business cards at their parties. I keep trying to tell them about the law and that I can't legally do it at home and that that's the reason I only do it for people I know and only for the cost of the ingredients. They all keep introducing me to their friends and say now you know her so you can make cakes for her too. I sent four cakes for the cakewalk at my son's school last year and was asked for my card by all the women in the office when I delivered them and a bunch of people from the PTA. The PTA pres. asked if I would be willing to raffle a "cake of your choice" at next year's carnival. I told her I didn't think I could do that and I explained the law. There is a bakery nearby that everyone uses and every time someone new tries one of my cakes, they tell me I need to advertise because I would put the other bakery out of business. They all say my cakes look and taste better than the bakery's cakes. I don't know what to do. This is something that I'm pretty good at and getting better with every cake. I've never taken a class and have taught myself everything I know with a little help from you guys once in a while. I LOVE decorating cakes. And the impossible ideas are my favorite because I love figuring out a way to do something. I try to make everything on my cakes edible. I CANNOT open a bakery, especially not by myself. I want to be around for my kids and my husband. But now I'm afraid that I'm going to get in trouble because so many people know about me now. I would love for the law to be changed so that I could do this legally at home. I guess now I'm just going to have to stop making cakes for everyone but my family and closest friends. I don't have all of my pictures posted on here but I have a photo album that gets lots of oohs and aahs every time someone looks at it. I guess it's time to put it away or go ask for a job at the bakery. I really don't want to work for someone else though, with them selling my creations under their name. It doesn't seem quite fair!
post #47 of 347
Bump. The legislature will be in session again come January '09. Anyone want to write letters again? icon_smile.gif
post #48 of 347
Jodiedew's post in this thread inspired me and got me eager to get back on the horse and write another letter. Here it is, you are welcome to copy it, make changes to it, or add your personal story. These guys are more likely to pay attention to a heartfelt letter than something that looks like it was copied.

Go to http://www.fyi.legis.state.tx.us/ and put in your address to find out who your state senator and representative are.

Quote:
Quote:


January 10, 2009



Representative Dan Gattis
P.O. Box 2910
Austin, TX 78768

Dear Representative Gattis:

In 2007 I wrote to you regarding an issue that is very important to me the enacting of a Cottage Foods Act to legalize the sale of home baked cakes and cookies. I am writing again to ask you to sponsor a bill that would allow Texans to sell non-hazardous baked goods prepared in residential kitchens.

In Texas it is illegal to sell a cake made in a home kitchen. Most people are not aware of this law. It is the Texas Administrative Code, Food Establishment Rules, Rule §229.167 (E)(10) which states Private homes and living or sleeping quarters, use prohibition. A private home, a room used as living or sleeping quarters, or an area directly opening into a room used as living or sleeping quarters may not be used for conducting food establishment operations.

This law is in place to protect the public from unsafe foods. However, cakes and other baked goods such as cookies, pies and brownies are considered low-risk for spoilage and contamination due to their high sugar content. There are at least 9 other states that have mechanisms in place for allowing bakers and cake decorators to sell non-hazardous foods made in residential kitchen, including:

Iowa
http://www.extension.iastate.edu/Publications/PM1294.pdf
Massachusetts
http://www.mass.gov/agr/markets/specfood/selling_foods_made_in_your_farm_kitchen.htm
North Carolina
http://www.agr.state.nc.us/fooddrug/homebiz.htm
Ohio
http://www.ohioagriculture.gov/pubs/divs/food/food-licensing.stm
Oregon  
http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/FSD/docs/pdf/pub_dk.pdf
Pennsylvania
Department of Agriculture (717) 787-4737
Tennessee
http://www.state.tn.us/agriculture/regulate/permits/permit4.html
Utah (as of 200icon_cool.gif
http://ag.utah.gov/regsvcs/CottageFoodCoverLetter.pdf
Virginia
Department of Agriculture (804) 786-3520

A quick search for cake on Craigslist already shows many people advertising cake businesses run from their homes. With the economy faltering and people looking for ways to earn extra income, more will naturally turn to selling home-baked goods, unaware of the legal ramifications. Because this activity is illegal in Texas, these people cannot obtain business liability insurance to protect themselves financially. Should they be sued, they could potentially lose everything, including their homes. It would serve the public interest to regulate this already-existing industry, and de-criminalize the act of selling low risk food prepared in a residential kitchen.

In Maryland, Delegate Mary Ann Love is currently bringing a bill to committee to create a cottage foods act. Would you consider doing the same? I would be glad to meet with you to discuss this further. I also have colleagues and contacts throughout the state of Texas who fervently hope the law will be changed, and they would also be glad to join our meeting.

America and indeed Texas were founded on the ideals of freedom and entrepreneurialism. Our founding fathers surely never envisioned a country where it would be illegal for a woman to sell a cake made in her own kitchen. I humbly ask for your help in this matter.

Thank you sincerely,

name
address
website
email
phone



....aaaaaaand [/soapbox] icon_biggrin.gif
post #49 of 347
There was so little interest in the thread we started last month, I'm guessing no one really is. Which I don't get-how much easier would it be for all of us to be legal? To be insured, and protected? This would be a great thing for bakers.
post #50 of 347
When are they in session? Is it too late to send a letter?
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it.-Dick Cavett
I tried to think but nothing happened!-Curly
I've been temporarily distracted...be back when I lose interest!
Diana
Reply
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it.-Dick Cavett
I tried to think but nothing happened!-Curly
I've been temporarily distracted...be back when I lose interest!
Diana
Reply
post #51 of 347
From Jan. 13 to sometime in June. NOW is the time to send a letter. icon_smile.gif

They are only in session every other year, so if we don't get something done this time, we have to wait until 2011 to try again.
post #52 of 347
Awesome! I'll post a link to this thread in the Permian Basin/ West Texas Thread. THANK YOU FOR THIS INFORMATION!
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it.-Dick Cavett
I tried to think but nothing happened!-Curly
I've been temporarily distracted...be back when I lose interest!
Diana
Reply
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it.-Dick Cavett
I tried to think but nothing happened!-Curly
I've been temporarily distracted...be back when I lose interest!
Diana
Reply
post #53 of 347
kelleym. your letter is awesome! I just started doing cakes a couple of months ago and don't fall into the ready to start a biz out of my home category, but would like to do so in the next few years. I will definitely write a letter to support the issue. The last part where you wrote "America and indeed Texas were founded on the ideals of freedom and entrepreneurialism. Our founding fathers surely never envisioned a country where it would be illegal for a woman to sell a cake made in her own kitchen" really touched me, hopefully it will do the same for the rep's.

When you read about food icons like Sara Lee and Colonial Sanders, they all started selling out of their homes. It's really sad that our country is inhibiting the growth of any newborn idea from individuals. Especially when the economy is where it is right now.

Best of luck everyone!
post #54 of 347
Thanks for posting that letter, kelleym! I give my cakes and other baked goods as gifts for friends and family, but lately I've been getting more and more requests to do cakes or goody baskets (cookies, candies, breads, etc) for a fee. Not knowing Texas law for this, I googled it and this thread came up. Thanks again for the information. I will be sending my letter right away!
post #55 of 347
I started taking decorating classes at a bakery about 2 years ago to advance my skills. My instructor has been a home baker for decades. She has contracts with caterers and restaurants. She does cakes for churches. She runs a massive show from home. I asked one day about licensing and she said that cake decorators in Texas are technically illegal, but the only way anything would happen is if someone actually called and reported you, which she said she has never heard of happening to anyone. So, she fully encouraged me to start doing it on my own. Which I just started this month. Business cards and all... I hope I haven't done the wrong thing. I read the post from jjandascog and feel horrible because my instructor would say, GO FOR IT!
post #56 of 347
Sweet1122: One of my friends is the local health inspector's wife. She spoke with him about my whole situtation. She said that as long as I DO NOT ADVERTISE AND NO ONE REPORTS ME, it was ok with him. Kinda that he knows I am there but but I don't make myself into a pest.. ya know? What you are saying IS true. BUT (and it's a biggy) if you get reported, you WILL be fined. Everyone has to do what they feel is right.
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it.-Dick Cavett
I tried to think but nothing happened!-Curly
I've been temporarily distracted...be back when I lose interest!
Diana
Reply
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it.-Dick Cavett
I tried to think but nothing happened!-Curly
I've been temporarily distracted...be back when I lose interest!
Diana
Reply
post #57 of 347
Any idea on the fine range? I mean are we talking $10,000 or a couple thousand? Jail? I hope the laws change... I'll do my part. For now, I'm only doing cakes for friends and really charging very little. I fully intend to file everything on my taxes. I've already spoken to a tax accountant to make sure I have all my i's dotted and t's crossed when it comes to keeping track of everything. Thanks for your help.
post #58 of 347
According to someone in this thread, it can be $5700 and 12 months probation.

The CC members in Texas who have been "found out" by the health department have been ordered to cease and desist. The bigger problem is if someone claims they got sick from one of your cakes and sues you. Without a legal business you can't get liability insurance, therefore your personal assets are on the line.

It would be better for EVERYONE - cakers and customers alike, to have a cottage foods act.

Join us and write a letter icon_smile.gif
post #59 of 347
I WAS fined! It was $350 for the first offense. The second offense would have been $700 and a third offense would be $1500 and jail time/probation.

It does not just have to be REPORTED but if your product is at a PUBLIC event that is being monitored by the health department--TROUBLE!!!

I do not care if "everyone knows it", you can still get fined! On the other side--it did make me get off my butt and get legal. AND the HD actually goes out of their way to help and offer advice.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

"Quality Cakes Aren't Cheap and Cheap Cakes Aren't Quality"

It's not "just cake!"
Reply
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

"Quality Cakes Aren't Cheap and Cheap Cakes Aren't Quality"

It's not "just cake!"
Reply
post #60 of 347
Mac, how did you "get Legal", if you're in East Texas? I thought you couldn't BE legal in Texas.

I will write my Rep too! I want to be allowed to sell cakes.
Fast food IS Biblical!! Prov. 31:14 "She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar."
Reply
Fast food IS Biblical!! Prov. 31:14 "She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar."
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cake Decorating Business
Cake Central › Cake Forums › Cake Talk › Cake Decorating Business › Texas Becoming Legal