Cottage Food Laws Illinois

Are you a food producer in the state of Illinois looking to start a business? If so, you need to be aware of the cottage food laws in the state. These laws tell you what foods you can sell and where you can sell them. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about Illinois cottage food laws.

Once you’re all set, sign up for Airmart to start selling your homemade food:

What are Cottage Food Laws Illinois?

cottage food laws illinois

Cottage food laws are regulations that apply to the sale of certain homemade food products. These laws exist to ensure the safety of consumers by mandating certain requirements for food producers. For example, in Illinois, cottage food producers must label their products with the ingredients, nutritional information, and contact information for the producer.

What cottage foods can I sell?

The Illinois cottage food law allows all food and drink except those listed here:

  • Meat, poultry, fish, seafood, or shellfish
  • Dairy, except as an ingredient in a non-potentially hazardous baked good or candy; or as an ingredient in a baked good frosting, such as buttercream
  • Eggs, except as an ingredient in a non-potentially hazardous food, including dry noodles, or as an ingredient in a baked good frosting such as buttercream, if the eggs are not raw
  • Pumpkin pies, sweet potato pies, cheesecakes, custard pies, creme pies, and pastries with potentially hazardous fillings or toppings
  • Garlic in oil or oil infused with garlic, except if the garlic oil is acidified
  • Low-acid canned foods
  • Sprouts
  • Cut leafy greens except for cut leafy greens that are dehydrated, acidified or blanched and frozen
  • Cut or pureed fresh tomato or melon
  • Dehydrated tomato or melon
  • Frozen cut melon
  • Wild-harvested, non-cultivated mushrooms
  • Alcoholic beverages; Kombucha
cottage food laws illinois no melon

What are the labeling requirements for Illinois cottage foods?

Under the Illinois cottage food law, you must label all foods you produce in your home with the following information:

  • The name of the Cottage Food Operation and county in which the Cottage Food Operation is located
  • The identifying registration number from the local health department on the certificate of registration and the name of the municipality or county
  • The common name of the food product
  • All ingredients in the food product, including any color, artificial flavor, and preservative, listed in descending order by predominance of weight
  • The following phrase featured prominently on the label: “This product was produced in a home kitchen not inspected by a health department that may also process common food allergens. If you have safety concerns, contact your local health department.”
  • The date you made the product
  • An allergen label identifying any of the following ingredients: milk, eggs, wheat, peanuts, soybeans, fish, tree nuts, shellfish, and sesame

In addition, all labels must be in English and must adhere to the labeling requirements of the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Other Cottage Food Laws Illinois

In addition to the labeling requirements, cottage food producers in Illinois must adhere to certain other requirements. All cottage food producers must:

  1. Register with the Illinois Department of Public Health in the county they reside.
  2. Complete a food safety course.
  3. Keep detailed records of their sales

Additionally, you can only sell cottage foods within the state of Illinois, directly to consumers for personal consumption only. Cottage food producers may sell their homemade food at farmers markets, farm stands, or other other direct-to-consumer venues, including online marketplaces. You must sell food in its original packaging within 60 days of production.

For all your Illinois cottage food law questions, check out the state’s comprehensive guide here.

Now that you know everything you need to know about Illinois cottage food laws, it’s time to get started on your business. Create an Airmart account to start selling your homemade food in minutes.