News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Valley Life

May 12, 2013

‘Food Safety: From Garden Gates to Dinner Plates’ workshop coming up in June

There is a new law on the books in Illinois called the Cottage Food Operation Act of 2011. This new law allows for the preparation and sale of certain low-risk foods in the private home without the expense of a commercially certified kitchen and for the sale of said foods at a farmers market.

Operating a business under the Cottage Food Operation Act is not for everyone. But for some creative energetic people with an entrepreneurial spirit, it can be just the opportunity they need to get started. The main business advantage of this law is it allows food entrepreneurs to sell their goods without significant start-up capital.

Mary Liz Wright, University of Illinois Extension nutrition and wellness educator, will present an illustrated talk and food demonstration on how to safely prepare jams and jellies for sale to the public. She will also discuss the preparation of homemade baked products under this law and how to get your kitchen ready for this endeavor, including home kitchen safety and sanitation practices.

There are basic guidelines that growers and vendors must observe in preparation for farmers market sales. A review of the new Cottage Food Operation Act and the specific rules and regulations set forth by the Illinois Department of Public Health will be discussed in this workshop.

“Food Safety: From Garden Gates to Dinner Plates” workshop will be from 6 to 8 p.m. June 4 at University of Illinois Extension, Clark County office, at 15493 N Illinois 1 in Marshall, Ill. A pre-registration fee of $5 for the workshop is required by June 1. Call the Clark County Extension Office at 217-826-5422 for more information or visit

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