fbpx

Selling Homemade Food in South Carolina

Setting up a business to sell homemade food is relatively easy in South Carolina. Under the state’s Home-Based Food Production Law, passed in 2012, people who work in their own kitchens can operate without a retail food establishment permit. Formerly, home-based food producers in South Carolina were subject to a gross annual revenue limit of $15,000, but as of 2018, the Palmetto State no longer enforces this limit, allowing home-based food producers to make as much as they can. Homemade food must be labeled clearly and sold directly to the consumer, not through restaurants or retail outlets like grocery stores. 

South Carolina cottage food types

Many states regulate “cottage food,” meaning food made in a home kitchen for sale. Cottage food producers in South Carolina may sell baked goods like breads and cookies, along with candy-coated nuts, dried fruits, popcorn and apples. The Clemson Cooperative Extension Home & Garden Information Center provides a more detailed list of allowable South Carolina cottage foods… 

South Carolina cottage food facts

Myths about cottage food abound. Here are the facts: 

  • Cottage food is safe. Critics who talk about the risk of food-borne illness give hypothetical examples of what could go wrong because real-world cases are rare or nonexistent. 
  • Cottage food is local. When neighbors trade with neighbors, money stays in the local economy. 
  • Cottage food is transparent. People who buy from a cottage food producer know what they get. If they have questions about ingredients, sourcing or safety, they can ask.
  • Cottage food creates jobs. Many homemade food producers use their income to provide for their families. Others seek a secondary or supplemental income. 
  • Cottage food empowers women. IJ cottage food research shows that most cottage food producers are women, and many live in rural areas with limited economic opportunity.
  • Cottage food expands consumer choice. Some stores simply don’t sell what you want. This is especially true if you have a gluten-free, peanut-free, halal, kosher or vegan diet. Cottage food fills market gaps, giving consumers more options.

South Carolina cottage food resources 

As part of its Food Freedom Initiative, the Institute for Justice provides a variety of resources for home bakers and other food entrepreneurs. These include: 

Tell your South Carolina story

Is government violating your homemade food freedom in South Carolina? Do you have a potential case for IJ? Get started here… 

Support South Carolina legislation

Help expand cottage food laws in South Carolina by teaming with the Institute for Justice. Send an email with your name, background information and availability to get started… 

Defending homemade food freedom nationwide 

People have a right to earn an honest living without arbitrary and excessive government interference. Since 2013, the Institute for Justice has defended home bakers and chefs as part of its Food Freedom Initiative. Read about IJ’s nationwide food freedom advocacy…

Alabama | Alaska | Arizona | Arkansas | California | Colorado | Connecticut | Delaware | District of Columbia | Florida | Georgia | Hawaii | Idaho | Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Kentucky |Louisiana | Maine | Maryland | Massachusetts | Michigan | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri | Montana | Nebraska | Nevada | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New Mexico | New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Ohio | Oklahoma | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee | Texas | Utah | Vermont | Virginia | Washington | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming


All information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Statutes, regulations, and processes are subject to change at any time, and specific facts and circumstances could alter how they are applied. If you have questions about the regulation of cottage foods in your jurisdiction, we recommend consulting a lawyer who can help you navigate the process. 

Sign up to receive IJ's biweekly digital magazine, Liberty & Law along with breaking updates about our fight to protect the rights of all Americans.

JOIN THE FIGHT!