Problem: The good news is that almost every state now has a bakery cottage food law, legislation that allows non-hazardous baked goods to be produced in a home kitchen for direct-to-consumer sale. However, while cottage food offers opportunity for farmers to diversify into value-added products; no resources exist to support farmers in producing baked goods that look professional and utilize ingredients grown on the farm. It’s easy to bring chocolate chip cookies to market, but that product doesn’t add value to what we farmers are growing.
Additionally, as farmers bring small batches to market, the packaging and product display tends to look more like a “bake sale” with baggies and plastic wrap rather than something one would expect from a real bakery.
Solution: This project creates a toolkit of resources for farmers to create baked goods in their home kitchen that utilize farm raised ingredients and are displayed in a professional manner, resulting in diversified sales leading to economic vitality. By using produce in baked goods, particularly blemished product, we keep more land in sustainable, ecologically sound production. Additionally, as cottage food products are sold directly to customers, such transactions enhance farmer quality of life by building healthy community connections.
Project objectives from proposal:
This project supports farmers diversifying to include small-batch homemade baked goods sales using their farm- raised product through the following:
- Develop a Resource Toolkit
- 30 non-hazardous recipes using farm produce
- 4 Non-hazardous frosting recipes
- Packaging & display ideas
2. Create & host two trainings
- Farmer workshop
- Webinar format (for Midwest & national access)
3. Share findings via outreach
- Workshops at 2019 National Women in Sustainable Agriculture Conference, Wisconsin Farmers Union Convention
- Outreach via partner groups farmer team is involved with, including MOSES, Renewing the Countryside, Farmers Union, Coops,