Now we need you to write to the Governor to register your support for AB 1616, the California Homemade Food Act!
Governor Jerry Brown
Attn: Legislative Affairs Unit
State Capitol, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814
SAMPLE LETTER – copy/paste or use this as an example. The more personalized the better!
_______________________________________________________________________Dear Governor Brown,
I’m writing to ask you to sign the California Homemade Food Act, AB 1616. AB 1616, similar to the “cottage food laws” in 33 other US states, would allow for the sale of a certain foods prepared in a home kitchen. This would enable individuals to supplement their income during these hard economic times and will provide communities with access to more local, homemade, and specialty foods. Additionally, it will provide opportunities for small-scale farmers to sell value-added products.
[Insert any additional reasons why a cottage food law would specifically benefit you and/or your community. Tell your personal story!]
Anyone who has looked into the options for renting commercial kitchens knows that they can cost $30 or more per hour, if such kitchens are even available for rent nearby–many rural areas do not have commercial kitchens available for leasing or for rent. This is, in part, due to strict requirements for necessary equipment that must be used in commercial kitchens per existing state law. These expenses are unnecessary and prohibitive for aspiring small, community-based food producers making what are scientifically and legally known as “non-potentially hazardous foods.”
AB 1616 makes sound fiscal sense: any expense incurred in enforcing the law by local health departments will be recouped from the registration and permit fees charged to those who participate in the program. The tax revenue to the state that these small businesses generate will surely exceed the extremely minimal enforcement costs to the state Department of Public Health.
AB 1616 includes many provisions to ensure public health and safety. It restricts the types of foods allowed for processing in a home kitchen to just those known not to be conducive to the growth of bacteria or other toxic microorganisms and it requires cottage food operators to obtain a food handler’s card, meaning they will have the same training for safe food handling as people who work in commercial kitchens.
I hope you will sign the California Homemade Food Act, AB 1616, into law. Thank you for giving my request the strongest consideration at a time when my community and our state really need this law.
[insert your name and address]