If you are a fan of things like homemade breads and other pastries, pickles, jams, and syrups, it may get a whole lot easier to find them at farmers markets and other venues in the new year.
South Dakota legislators voted unanimously in 2022 to revise the state’s cottage food laws and make it easier for food entrepreneurs to do business in this state. South Dakota House Bill 1322 now broadens the foods and food products that processors can sell from home, including certain non-temperature-controlled, canned, baked and frozen goods. Other products, like meat jerky and honey, are regulated by different agencies. Meat will still need to be inspected through a U.S. Department of Agriculture program. Honey will still need to be inspected by the South Dakota Department of Agriculture.
Previously, most items had to be sent to a state lab for approval — it was all a very lengthy and costly process and had many potential small foodpreneurs avoiding the process or of getting into the food production business altogether.
Because of the change and to help grow that new crop of small business owners, SDSU Extension announced this past fall a new training program for those who would like to sell food products from their homes. The South Dakota Cottage Home Processing Food Safety course includes information on proper food labeling, licensing fees, food testing, and other things processors need to know before they can begin selling food items. The state Department of Health-approved training will highlight food safety risks of several different food types. A food safety expert will also be available to answer questions.
The course is only available online. More information can be found on the South Dakota Cottage Home Processing Food Safety page. The cost is $40 per person and the certification is good for five years.
There are plans for the weekly farmers market in Flandreau to return in 2023. On average this past summer, between six to eight vendors if not more were on the east courthouse lawn every week between late June and late September. As organizers meet to determine what this year will bring and what vendors hope to offer, the Moody County Enterprise will share those updates. Vendors interested to learn more or be a part of the seasonal market, you’re asked to contact Jenny on the Flandreau Farmers Market Facebook page.