Homemade Bakery Product Labels Must be Properly Designed & Labeled.
Home Producers are sprouting up all over the United States, due to Cottage Food Laws, a law allowing low-risk bakery products to be manufactured in domestic homes, for consumption and distribution to the general marketplace. Many of the products you see at Farmer’s Markets are a direct result of Cottage Food Laws, and without these laws in place, producers would not be able to produce baked good at home and sell to a national audience.
However, it is not as simple as baking up tasty treats and putting a price on them; these baked good must be labeled correctly, to include ingredients, weight by volume or ounces and manufacturer information per the Food & Drug Administration guidelines. In addition to listing the required FDA information, the label must identify the product and ideally, set the product apart in the marketplace.
Farmers markets and local farm stands are the perfect outlet for new to market producers to test out their products and variable label designs. They keep producers in touch with their local markets and allow them to learn more about what works and what doesn’t. In addition, face time with consumers is the single most important step in launching a new product and these types of seasonal markets provide a great backdrop to building these new relationships.
As wonderful as these markets can be for your business, the competition is vast. The majority of new to market bakery producers will be there right beside you! That is why making sure you label your baked goods correctly and have a label design that ‘pops’ is crucial. Digital labels are the best choice for baked goods food producers for a variety of reasons, to include:
1.) You can print variable label designs without additional tooling and artwork charges. This gives you the advantage of trying different designs and choosing the labels that sell your products!
2.) Digital printing used UV cured inks. That means your labels will stand up to the sun, heat, and moisture that are common among seasonal Farmers Markets. Your labels will remain vibrant and resist the urge to curl or lift. You can feel confident that your products will remain intact and maintain the integrity of the brand you are working so hard to build.
3.) Digital printing is perfect for short runs, saving you the money you will need to build your business! Digital labels can be printed in batches as low as 100 labels. The days of having to buy thousands of labels at a time are over. You can benefit from a professional look and not break the bank!
Cottage Food Laws and How to Get Started:
Cottage Food Laws require producers to apply for the permission to manufacture baked goods in their home. Once approved, producers must abide by specific label requirements. Producers, who do not meet these requirements, and are found selling baked goods with improper labeling will be subject to fines and/or legal action. The Cottage Food Label requirements are:
* Special notification that baked goods were made in a home kitchen. (The registration or permit number of cottage food operation).
* Ingredients used in the creation of the product in descending order of prominence by weight.
* Net quantity of the food product in English and metric units.
* A declaration of the use of any major food allergens, including but not limited to milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts & soybean.
* The common or descriptive name of the product being sold.
* The name, city and ZIP code of where the baked good was produced.
In addition to meeting Cottage Food Laws, producers must also meet the FDA label requirements, especially when making product claims like “Low Fat” or “Organic”. For more information about FDA label regulations click here. It is important to remember that if a health claim is being made, all of the products nutritional information must be listed on the label, at all times.