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Hi I’m new to this forum, but not new to baking! I’ve always loved baking and during lockdown decided to make cupcakes to sell. This has gone really well this last lockdown. I’ve set up an Instagram account and would really like to do this as a profession, although I don’t seem to earn much out of doing it. Can anyone tell me are you suppose to list what ingredients go into your cakes? I don’t cook with nuts as I can’t eat them so I dont have that issue with my baking. Advice greatly appreciated many thanks
 
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Hi I’m new to this forum, but not new to baking! I’ve always loved baking and during lockdown decided to make cupcakes to sell. This has gone really well this last lockdown. I’ve set up an Instagram account and would really like to do this as a profession, although I don’t seem to earn much out of doing it. Can anyone tell me are you suppose to list what ingredients go into your cakes? I don’t cook with nuts as I can’t eat them so I dont have that issue with my baking. Advice greatly appreciated many thanks
local health dept would be your source.
I ran a bakery for yrs and never posted a single ingredient.
But if the customer can self serve, if its packaged for them to select from a shelf .. then all sorts of regulations kick in.
 
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, although I don’t seem to earn much out of doing it.
you can do anything baking at home without regard to expense but selling it requires finding people who will pay the price, you can either raise your prices and see if they still buy or lower your costs.
Its very difficult if youre paying retail prices, might be better getting a fed tax ID number and buying cash and carry places like restaurant depot. They will usually allow wholesale buyers to break cases if they just need 10 lbs of butter.

Packaging can be a problem too, it should be less than 3% of cost. Mine was 2 1/2%.
A 10x10x4 white box .57 cents , you can't put underpriced product in that box.
Plastic clamshell container for 6 cupcakes is 50 cents.
If you can charge $4 ea then you'll be at 2% cost for the container.
 
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Hi I’m new to this forum, but not new to baking! I’ve always loved baking and during lockdown decided to make cupcakes to sell. This has gone really well this last lockdown. I’ve set up an Instagram account and would really like to do this as a profession, although I don’t seem to earn much out of doing it. Can anyone tell me are you suppose to list what ingredients go into your cakes? I don’t cook with nuts as I can’t eat them so I dont have that issue with my baking. Advice greatly appreciated many thanks

If you’re in the United States nearly every state has cottage food laws.

It is illegal to sell food produce from home kitchen without a business and health department license.

And it is not just nuts you need to be concerned about.

There’s a list of foods that are prohibited for sale from a home kitchen are based on water activity level. These would prohibit the sale of any type of icing and fillings made butter, cream, and custards.

And yes, every state falls under federal food labeling laws. So food produced in a home kitchen for sale must comply with federal food labeling laws. But the good news is there are apps that make labeling easy.

But nearly every state prohibits internet sales of food produced in a home kitchen. Food poisoning is a major problem. In the event of a food poisoning outbreak the health department needs to be able to track down the source. So the states prohibit people from selling home cooked food over the internet because they cannot contain to whom and where it goes.

You need to contact the county health department to find out what the requirements are in you county and state.
 
S

Sharon Aydlette

This may help. https://www.pickyourown.org/CottageFoodLawsByState.htm
My cake studio is in my home. It's way too expensive to own a shop in South Carolina. I have been in the F&B industry since 2000. Working in BOH or as a server. 99% of the people in this business are in it because it's their passion. Trust, that are not in it for the money. Working in the BOH for 12-13 hrs a day 7 days a week will make you old and worn out real fast. The pay is low. That's why there is such a big shortage of F&B workers right now. They make more on unemployment. There is even a shortage food delivery for the same reason. Most restaurants fail within the first 3 years because of money. Food biz profit margin is 30% IF you're lucky. I have to sell a lot of cake to pay my bills. I saved $300 from the farmers market sales and started my business. I don't take vacations, I have missed a few funerals and food work hours and days are opposite of everyone else. Weekend are my weekdays. During the week I send out quotes, place orders and do prep work. Running your own business is probably the hardest thing I'v ever done. But I can't imagine doing anything else. It's in my blood. If you love it, you will make it work. If you enjoy it occasionally do it as a side hustle. But don't ever expect to get rich or make a lot of money. Good luck and enjoy the ride.
 
S

Sharon Aydlette

If you’re in the United States nearly every state has cottage food laws.

It is illegal to sell food produce from home kitchen without a business and health department license.

And it is not just nuts you need to be concerned about.

There’s a list of foods that are prohibited for sale from a home kitchen are based on water activity level. These would prohibit the sale of any type of icing and fillings made butter, cream, and custards.

And yes, every state falls under federal food labeling laws. So food produced in a home kitchen for sale must comply with federal food labeling laws. But the good news is there are apps that make labeling easy.

But nearly every state prohibits internet sales of food produced in a home kitchen. Food poisoning is a major problem. In the event of a food poisoning outbreak the health department needs to be able to track down the source. So the states prohibit people from selling home cooked food over the internet because they cannot contain to whom and where it goes.

You need to contact the county health department to find out what the requirements are in you county and state.
In SC we don't have to have a permit or license. They are in the process if updating the cottage food laws here. It's wonderful. WE can't ship or sell to restaurants and there are certain time/temp products we can't sell. Like banana bread, pumpkin or custard pies, cheesecake and those types of things. They won't come hunt you down if you don't comply but if you get caught selling those things they will slap a fine on you. We do have to have a tax id. I know all states are different. Some states allow food we don't and vice versa. Some states they only allow you to make so much money and some states have no cap. They just lifted the cap here in SC. Even thought I've been doing this for a few years now, I still refer back to the SC cottage food laws, since they are always being updated. PS, it's nice to see something that even knows cottage food laws exist. Since COVID we had a huge surge in home bakers here and they break those rules left and right all day, every day. I have to turn down business because of those laws and its quite frustrating to see that another home baker displaying her "illegal" work....lol. I'm not a snitch. But if one of their clients gets sick because she baked a cheesecake or custard pie, she'll probably get sued.
 
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Hi I’m new to this forum, but not new to baking! I’ve always loved baking and during lockdown decided to make cupcakes to sell. This has gone really well this last lockdown. I’ve set up an Instagram account and would really like to do this as a profession, although I don’t seem to earn much out of doing it. Can anyone tell me are you suppose to list what ingredients go into your cakes? I don’t cook with nuts as I can’t eat them so I dont have that issue with my baking. Advice greatly appreciated many thanks
What state are you in Debbie3003?
 
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This may help. https://www.pickyourown.org/CottageFoodLawsByState.htm
My cake studio is in my home. It's way too expensive to own a shop in South Carolina. I have been in the F&B industry since 2000. Working in BOH or as a server. 99% of the people in this business are in it because it's their passion. Trust, that are not in it for the money. Working in the BOH for 12-13 hrs a day 7 days a week will make you old and worn out real fast. The pay is low. That's why there is such a big shortage of F&B workers right now. They make more on unemployment. There is even a shortage food delivery for the same reason. Most restaurants fail within the first 3 years because of money. Food biz profit margin is 30% IF you're lucky. I have to sell a lot of cake to pay my bills. I saved $300 from the farmers market sales and started my business. I don't take vacations, I have missed a few funerals and food work hours and days are opposite of everyone else. Weekend are my weekdays. During the week I send out quotes, place orders and do prep work. Running your own business is probably the hardest thing I'v ever done. But I can't imagine doing anything else. It's in my blood. If you love it, you will make it work. If you enjoy it occasionally do it as a side hustle. But don't ever expect to get rich or make a lot of money. Good luck and enjoy the ride.
Hoping you are still looking at these posts, wondering how we could even have a cake studio in our home kitchens in SC when they don't allow for the icings? I use Swiss Meringue buttercream and from what I'm reading, if I wanted to have a cottage industry home baking business what would I be icing the cakes with? It's a bit confusing I'll admit.
 
S

Sharon Aydlette

Hoping you are still looking at these posts, wondering how we could even have a cake studio in our home kitchens in SC when they don't allow for the icings? I use Swiss Meringue buttercream and from what I'm reading, if I wanted to have a cottage industry home baking business what would I be icing the cakes with? It's a bit confusing I'll admit.

Hi, Sc has always allowed American buttercream. I already knew from personal research that they allowed mock swiss meringue buttercream using pasteurized egg whites. SC actually just revised their "allowed" foods last month. They DO allow swiss meringue buttercream as long as we use pasteurized egg whites. They are deemed much safer and more stable. So that is a MSMBC - mock swiss meringue buttercream. There are many foods allowed that were not before. Custards, pastry creams, quick breads with fruit and cheese cakes are still NOT allowed. I have a degree in culinary cuisine and pastry arts. Cottage food laws are all based on time/temp control. If I did not have the background I have, I would not even know what the heck that was ..lol. But when you think about it makes perfect sense. I find it odd though, that some people argue about foods that are not allowed. Food laws are not to punish people, they are to keep our clients safe. I carry food insurance because many of the venues I deliver my cakes to, require that. SC is working hard at their cottage food laws to make them more "small business" friendly. I highly recommend following SC Cottage Food Law on Facebook. Then you can be kept up to date on all changes. My business is my full time income, so I stay as up to date as possible. Here is the link for the
Fb page. https://www.facebook.com/SCCottageFoodLaw. Hope this helps.
 
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Hoping you are still looking at these posts, wondering how we could even have a cake studio in our home kitchens in SC when they don't allow for the icings? I use Swiss Meringue buttercream and from what I'm reading, if I wanted to have a cottage industry home baking business what would I be icing the cakes with? It's a bit confusing I'll admit.

If you want to serve an upscale market consider upgrading your license to a professional business license and look for a shared professional kitchen rental.

Many pastry chefs, caterers, and artisan bakers do not have a business structure that requires full-time kitchen. But they serve an clientele that demands products that can only be produced in a commercial kitchen. By renting kitchen space they’re able to meet health code requirements, plus have access to professional kitchen for production demands.

Example of a shared kitchen resource. But local churches, lodges, and even restaurants will rent their kitchens when they are not in use. These kitchens are already permitted and licensed, so it’s a way for them to make a little extra money renting out their kitchen for a few hours every week.

Some kitchens will offer some storage space for an additional fee. Otherwise you bring in your ingredients and any other specialty tools you might need each use.



 
S

Sharon Aydlette

If you want to serve an upscale market consider upgrading your license to a professional business license and look for a shared professional kitchen rental.

Many pastry chefs, caterers, and artisan bakers do not have a business structure that requires full-time kitchen. But they serve an clientele that demands products that can only be produced in a commercial kitchen. By renting kitchen space they’re able to meet health code requirements, plus have access to professional kitchen for production demands.

Example of a shared kitchen resource. But local churches, lodges, and even restaurants will rent their kitchens when they are not in use. These kitchens are already permitted and licensed, so it’s a way for them to make a little extra money renting out their kitchen for a few hours every week.

Some kitchens will offer some storage space for an additional fee. Otherwise you bring in your ingredients and any other specialty tools you might need each use.



I can tell you it's very expensive to rent kitchen space here in SC. Plus when you rent space, you can not do any work from home. SC doesn't let you do both. Also I get last minute orders, the last thing I want to do is go run to a kitchen to bake. I do 90% of my decorating and baking at 10pm and decorate around 1 or 2am. There are no interuptions. I don't know any rented kitchen with those hours..lol. In SC we have a lot of home cake studios because of kitchen rental prices and the way they regulate everything. We are slow in the south. But I love it here in Charleston! It's a great place for destination weddings. That's about 80% of my weddings.
 
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I can tell you it's very expensive to rent kitchen space here in SC. Plus when you rent space, you can not do any work from home. SC doesn't let you do both. Also I get last minute orders, the last thing I want to do is go run to a kitchen to bake. I do 90% of my decorating and baking at 10pm and decorate around 1 or 2am. There are no interuptions. I don't know any rented kitchen with those hours..lol. In SC we have a lot of home cake studios because of kitchen rental prices and the way they regulate everything. We are slow in the south. But I love it here in Charleston! It's a great place for destination weddings. That's about 80% of my weddings.

Public health regulations prohibits sells all products with butter, cream, liquid, fruit filling. The lower quality products with powdered sugar icing and filling sell with for significantly less. They severely limit customer base.

The area I live in wedding cakes start at $8/serving. But the average is $15/serving. Brides don’t pay that money for powdered sugar icing. Upon request you can always make an powdered sugar icing cake in a commerical kitchen and sell it legally, but you cannot legally produce and sell an Italian meringue buttercream cake with mascarpone chantilly cream filling in a home kitchen.

Any professional will tell you time is money. Scheduling your orders and bakes is critical to profitability. If you’re baking at 1 am you’re doing something wrong. You need to learn how to run a business efficiently.
 
S

Sharon Aydlette

Public health regulations prohibits sells all products with butter, cream, liquid, fruit filling. The lower quality products with powdered sugar icing and filling sell with for significantly less. They severely limit customer base.

The area I live in wedding cakes start at $8/serving. But the average is $15/serving. Brides don’t pay that money for powdered sugar icing. Upon request you can always make an powdered sugar icing cake in a commerical kitchen and sell it legally, but you cannot legally produce and sell an Italian meringue buttercream cake with mascarpone chantilly cream filling in a home kitchen.

Any professional will tell you time is money. Scheduling your orders and bakes is critical to profitability. If you’re baking at 1 am you’re doing something wrong. You need to learn how to run a business efficiently.
Wow! I LOVE working at those hours. I enjoy the quiet of that time. I have answered the emails of the day and no phone calls. The area I live, balks at $8.00 and up. I live in Charleston SC, a popular, but very small city. We have quite a few, top notch designers in Charleston that work from home, because of how SC runs the kitchen rentals. There are maybe 2 or 3 rental kitchens where I live and they start at $30 and hour. That's $240.00 right off the top for 8 hours of work. Then the cake charge and delivery charge. Charleston is much different than where you live. I do not know you and you do not know me or the quality of my work. I make swiss buttercream using pasteurized egg whites. It comes out super smooth. No air bubbles or graininess and minimal sweetness. I can't tell how many brides tell me there have never had it before and love it! I must be doing something right because they send their friends to me and they themselves come back to me to order their anniversary cake. Again, you do not even know how I run my business. I am successful and local planners contact me all the time for cakes. I would never tell a total stranger, which we are, how their product and service is below par, never even having seen or tasted anything from them. My business currently is debt free. I like that feeling. I was offering help to a fellow South Carolinian. You have offered no help. Only criticism. So you run your cake business the way you like and I will run mine the way I like. The way it works in the are where I live.
 
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Wow! I LOVE working at those hours. I enjoy the quiet of that time. I have answered the emails of the day and no phone calls. The area I live, balks at $8.00 and up. I live in Charleston SC, a popular, but very small city. We have quite a few, top notch designers in Charleston that work from home, because of how SC runs the kitchen rentals. There are maybe 2 or 3 rental kitchens where I live and they start at $30 and hour. That's $240.00 right off the top for 8 hours of work. Then the cake charge and delivery charge. Charleston is much different than where you live. I do not know you and you do not know me or the quality of my work. I make swiss buttercream using pasteurized egg whites. It comes out super smooth. No air bubbles or graininess and minimal sweetness. I can't tell how many brides tell me there have never had it before and love it! I must be doing something right because they send their friends to me and they themselves come back to me to order their anniversary cake. Again, you do not even know how I run my business. I am successful and local planners contact me all the time for cakes. I would never tell a total stranger, which we are, how their product and service is below par, never even having seen or tasted anything from them. My business currently is debt free. I like that feeling. I was offering help to a fellow South Carolinian. You have offered no help. Only criticism. So you run your cake business the way you like and I will run mine the way I like. The way it works in the are where I live.

The OP was clear as to the quality of products they wanted to provide.

Due to food safety laws, the home based, bakery business is prohibited from producing and selling any products with butter, cream, cheese, custards, fresh fruit, and certain water actively level.

This is the law in every state. This is a fact it’s not a criticism.

The only way to offer the quality products the OP wants to provide is to work out of a commercial kitchen.

You may enjoy working at 1 AM. But 99% of people do want to work at 1 am.

And they do want to start a business with a single tier customer base with no growth potential because food safety law prevents them from selling all products to other customers. Aside from having no potential for growth, it also has no protection against recession. A business needs a broad customer base to survive. You can’t have customers from just one end of the spectrum or the other. You need customers from across the board.

I live in a major food center-heart of the Wine Country. The businesses that have survived the pandemic lockdown are the ones who had the broad customer base. and it’s not just the food businesses, but businesses in general. Over 500 restaurants in the wine country closed.

Yet the wedding industry here is working overtime. It’s the end of October and weddings are still happening here.
 
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Sharon Aydlette

My business is growing as a wonderful pace. You run your business the way you want, I will run mine the way I want and the OP who has not even been involved in this silly conversation, will run her business the way she wants. You can NOT compare Charleston SC to where you live. You have yet disclosed where you live, but it sounds like it is much much bigger than Charleston. Best wishes and come visit our tiny, but beautiful city of Charleston.
 
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My business is growing as a wonderful pace. You run your business the way you want, I will run mine the way I want and the OP who has not even been involved in this silly conversation, will run her business the way she wants. You can NOT compare Charleston SC to where you live. You have yet disclosed where you live, but it sounds like it is much much bigger than Charleston. Best wishes and come visit our tiny, but beautiful city of Charleston.

Excuse me lady, but you’re the one that jumped in on my comment.

I responded to the OP— who clearly stated they wanted to make cakes with meringue, and you jumped in and commented on what I said.

If you don’t want people taking issue with what you have to say, stay out of their comments.

I seriously don’t understand people who put their nose in on other people‘s comments and then get their nose out of joint when they get a response.
 

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