Background: Through HB630, the 2013 Montana Legislature mandated the Departments of Public Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and Livestock to study Montana’s food laws and rules and recommend ways to make them clearer, and to make it easier for Montana entrepreneurs bring new products to market and determine safe and practical ways to implement a cottage food industry.
Following this study, the 2015 Montana Legislature passed HB0478 that implements the majority of the recommended changes. The changes have been incorporated into the Montana
Code Annotated, specifically in MCA Title 50. Chapter 50: Retail Food Establishments
Key items addressed by the new law, include:
- Implementing safety standards and oversight for cottage food operations and various
retail food establishments;
- Providing conditions and registration requirements for cottage food operations; clarifying
terms and state regulation of mobile food establishments;
- Providing for local boards of health to oversee and issue permits for temporary food
- Clarifying regulation of a cottage food operation in relation to certain products; and
- Extending rule-making authority for the department of public health and human services.
To read specific changes to Montana’s Food Laws, visit this document: New MT Food Law section descriptions. There are many new opportunities for MT food entrepreneurs under Montana’s 2015 Food Policy Modernization Law, particularly for Cottage Food businesses! Visit the link to read about honey, mobile units, and more!