Subject: UPDATE: SUPPORT HB 1785 to Increase Legal Cottage Foods – Contact Your Lawmaker Before Wednesday's Vote!

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Hi Friend,

On Monday the House Ag Subcommittee #1 reported on HB 1785 with changes.
The vote was Yea-5 (
Knight, Poindexter, Orrock, Keam, Rodman) Nay-3 (Morefield, Bloxom, James). HB 1785 will now be heard by the full Agriculture Committee TOMORROW, Wednesday, January 16 at 9 a.m. 

If passed, HB 1785 would increase local food options, consumer choice, and possible revenue streams for Virginians by legalizing the sale of homemade yogurt and homemade baked goods that need refrigeration, as well as increasing the amount of homemade pickles that can be sold.

Please take action now! See action steps below. 

And please share this alert with your friends and family in Virginia! You can find the URL for this alert at

Thanks to Virginia Independent Consumers and Farmers Association (VICFA) for publicizing and pushing this bill forward.

HB 1785 Virginia Pickles

Ask your Assembly Delegate to sign as a co-patron for HB 1785 and help the bill move forward. If you don’t know who represents you, go to

See all patrons of the bill HERE.

Remember, calls are far more effective than emails, and they can take just a couple of minutes! Keep your call or email short, polite, and clear—you can simply give your name, identify yourself as a constituent, and ask the Delegate to support the bill. If you have time, add a sentence or two about why this issue is important to you. See More Information, below, for some talking points that you can use.

If you’re a constituent of any of the members listed below who sit on the House Agriculture Committee, please let him/her know that you support this bill. If you're not a constituent, please skip this action item—committee members want to hear from their constituents, not people from all over the state. The House Ag Committee is hearing the bill tomorrow, Wednesday, January 16 at 9 a.m.

House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources Committee:

Marshall, Daniel W., III (Chair) 
14th District
804 698 1014

Poindexter, Charles D. (Vice Chair)
9th District
804 698 1009

Ware, R. Lee
65th District
804 698 1065

Wright, Thomas C., Jr.
61st District
804 698 1061

Orrock, Robert D., Sr.
54th District
804 698 1054

Knight, Barry D.
81st District
804 698 1081

Edmunds, James E., II
60th District
804 698 1060

Wilt, Tony O.
26th District
804 698 1026

Morefield, James W. (Will)
3rd District
804 698 1003

Ransone, Margaret B.
99th District
804 698 1099

Fariss, C. Matthew
59th District
804 698 1059

Bloxom, Robert S., Jr.
100th District
804 698 1000

Plum, Kenneth R.
36th District
804 698 1036

Bulova, David L.
37th District
804 698 1037

James, Matthew
80th District
804 698 1080

Keam, Mark L.
35th District
804 698 1035

Lopez, Alfonso H.
49th District
804 698 1049

Sullivan, Richard C. (Rip), Jr.
48th District
804 698 1048

Adams, Dawn M.
68th District
804 698 1068

Gooditis, Gwendolyn W.
10th District
804 698 1010

Rodman, Debra H.
73rd District
804 698 1073

Herring, Charniele L.
46th District
804 698 1046

The House Agriculture Committee hearing on HB 1785 will be this Wednesday, January 16, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. in:

House Room 3
Pocahontas Building
900 East Main Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219 [directions]

Please call Anne Buteau from VICFA at (434) 260-4701 for more details about the meeting.

The bill summary as introduced: 

Food establishment inspections; exemptions. Exempts from inspections by the Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services private homes where the resident processes and prepares any yogurt that has an equilibrium pH value of 4.6 or lower or baked good, subject to certain conditions. Current law exempts only those baked goods that do not require time or temperature control after preparation. The bill removes the requirement that private homes where the resident processes pickles or other acidified vegetables sell less than $3,000 in gross sales in a calendar year in order to qualify for such exemption. This bill contains technical amendments.

You can read the original House Bill 1785 HERE. There will be a committee substitute, meaning a slightly different version of the bill will be heard by the committee, but we do not have that language yet.

Talking Points:
  • HB 1785 would increase the sales limit on pickles from $3000 to $4000. Since home-made pickle sales were made legal in 2013, there have been no issues. Since the cost of living and of ingredients has increased, the sales limit should be raised.
  • The bill also allows baked goods such as meringue pies, quiches, and pumpkin pies to be available for sale, (not just those baked goods that do not require “time and temperature control after preparation”). These are foods that many consumers are seeking out from cottage food producers, because they want to buy them from local producers. 
  • Last, the bill allows homemade yogurt to be sold to the end consumer. Yogurt is a nutritionally dense food that enhances the variety of beneficial bacteria in the gut and thus supports the immune system.
As Joel Salatin, famous Virginia farmer and long-time member of FTCLDF and VICFA, points out: “Refusing to appreciate the difference between a 500-employees 24/7/365 export-oriented processing facility and a neighbor’s homemade food craft is unnecessarily prohibitive to choice, innovation, and opportunity. Farmers and food shoppers need relief from these onerous and limiting regulations.” | 703-208-FARM (3276) |
8116 Arlington Blvd Suite #263, Falls Church, VA 22042, United States
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