Is it legal to sell homemade food items as a fundraiser for a 501C3 in NY?

I'm looking to help raise some money for the non-profit theatre company I work for, and am wondering about the legality of selling homemade items at some of our events - specifically, marshmallows. Because school bake sales were recently restricted in the city (mostly because of child obesity) I'm assuming the worst, but I'm hoping to find about the specific laws and loopholes regarding this area. Thanks!

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AntoniaJames
AntoniaJames March 18, 2011

Ask the legal counsel for the organization to answer this, and don't rely on any answer you receive from anyone else. ;o)

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boulangere
boulangere March 18, 2011

Agree with AJ, and a phone call to your health department should give you a simple answer. And if it's no, pay attention!

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Peanut
Peanut March 21, 2011

I think there are legal/health department issues involved in selling any food product that wasn't made in an approved/inspected kitchen, although I suspect you could invite "donations" for your baked goods. I suggest you try calling 311 in NYC; they can connect you with whoever it is in City government that regulates this kind of thing. Also, I recommend you contact the Arts & Business Council of New York (www.artsandbusiness-ny.org). If Fran Smyth at ABC/NY doesn't know the answer, she is sure to know someone who does!

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