[Market-farming] commercial kitchen advice?

Jackie Jameson jacqueline.jameson at gmail.com
Thu Nov 15 09:41:43 EST 2012

I forgot to put a link in to the NYS food establishments license page.  At
the top of this page is a link to the "description of food processing" and
a link to the 20-C license application.  As you can see, the license
application is $400.
http://www.agriculture.ny.gov/FS/general/license.html.  You might find
someone at Cornell Extension who can help make your
budget and find the most cost-effective way.
Good luck,

On Thu, Nov 15, 2012 at 9:25 AM, Jackie Jameson <
jacqueline.jameson at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi Rivka,  I haven't started one, but am familiar with the standards
> because of my work.  If you are only doing fruit jams and baked goods, you
> qualify for home processor license (where you use your kitchen).    This is
> the home processor exemption page
> http://www.agriculture.ny.gov/FS/consumer/processor.html
> If you're making anything else, you need a full commercial kitchen.  (That
> includes dehydrated foods).  NY State regulates the kitchen in 20-C and
> your local health department licenses you.  Products will need to get an
> approved process, you'd probably use Cornell to do that.  This will assure
> your process is safe.
> Regarding construction cost: If you're processing by hand, you might
> compare it to a restaurant kitchen.   Some of the things you'll need are
>    - So you'll need a building, or renovate a room in a building that
>    passes building code.
>    - You'll need certain surfaces that can be washed (walls, ceilings,
>    floors),
>    - specific kinds of light fixtures,
>    - specific kinds of sinks,
>    - a separate hand washing sink,
>    - specific kinds of doors and windows,
>    - a bathroom that meets certain requirements
>    - a water heater,
>    - a septic or sewer (many times you need a separate septic),
>    - enough water for what you're making (if that's a well, you need a
>    certain GPM),
>    - you'll need to test well water initially and quarterly for coliform
>    and other contaminants.
>    - approved storage racks
>    - approved storage room
>    - all the equipment must be stainless and commercial grade
> Your cost to build and license a commercial kitchen is going to depend on
> which resources you already have, and your own cost of labor.  If you have
> a builder in the family, your cost is must lower.
> Hope that helps,
> Jackie
> On Wed, Nov 14, 2012 at 12:20 PM, Road's End Farm <
> organic87 at frontiernet.net> wrote:
>> Hi --
>> Has anyone on this list ever started a commercial kitchen according to
>> New York State (or similar) standards? If so, could you tell me what
>> materials you used, and how much did it cost?
>> I'm looking at possibly dehydrating or canning excess produce, and can't
>> sell such items legally here without a commercial kitchen. I would almost
>> certainly have to put up a new building. Money is definitely a factor.
>> Thanks --
>>  -- Rivka; Finger Lakes NY, Zone 6A now I think
>> Fresh-market organic produce, small scale
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