IORC wins cottage food rules

Idaho Organization of Resource Councils members are celebrating a major victory for local food production. The Health and Welfare Committees in both chambers of Idaho’s state legislature unanimously passed rules making sales of non-hazardous homemade goods direct to consumers legal in the state.

Cottage food production is now an officially recognized industry in Idaho.

The rules were subject to public hearings and negotiation in 2015 so with the Committees’ approval, they will be incorporated into the Idaho Food Code. The rules provide consistent policies across the state regulating cottage food sales, opening new markets for local food processors.

According to the Capital Press articleIdaho lawmakers approve new rule on cottage foods:

The Idaho Organization of Resource Councils, which represents many cottage foods producers, helped lead the push for state recognition of the industry.

Cottage food producers were seeking a clear definition of cottage foods, the right to sell their products directly to consumers and consistency across the health districts, IORC board member Julia Page told committee members.

“The rules you are considering today accomplish these goals and will help our members avoid the delays, uncertainty and cost they have experienced in the past when the health districts had different … requirements that differed from place to place,” she said.

She said the rules “will unlock entrepreneurship and vitality across the state, by making this home-grown, small-scale business model available all over Idaho.'”

For more information or get involved in IORC’s cottage food effort, contact organizer Breland Draper.