ON-Lion Letter

Anyone with an oven and a recipe should be able to have a baking business -- but that is not the case in Wisconsin, where selling baked goods made in your home kitchen is punishable by six months in jail or up to $1,000 in fines.  A new lawsuit filed in state court by three Wisconsin farmers and the Institute for Justice (IJ) in Arlington, Va., seeks to change that.  Milwaukee's Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation substantially supports IJ.

Wisconsin is one of only two states to ban entrepreneurs like IJ clients Lisa Kivirist, Kriss Marion, and Dela Ends from selling cookies, muffins, and breads simply because they are made in a home kitchen.  If a Wisconsinite wants to sell even one cookie, she must acquire a burdensome commercial license, which requires renting or building a commercial kitchen, numerous inspections, and multiple fees.

"The state's home-baked-good ban hurts farmers, homemakers, and others who just want to help support their family by selling simple goods from their home oven," according to Kivirist, a farmer in Green County. "Not to mention that the ban prevents customers from buying the fresh and local foods of their choice."

"Wisconsin's home-baked-good ban has nothing to do with safety and everything to do with politics and protectionism,” IJ attorney Erica Smith said.  The farmer plaintiffs are also represented by Michael D. Dean of Brookfield, Wis., who is serving as local counsel.

Actions: E-mail | Permalink |