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May 4, 2011 2:08 PM by Stephanie Collins

"Cottage Foods" bill advances

DENVER (AP) - Home-cooked foods including jams and breads have moved a step closer to getting commercial approval in Colorado.

The state Senate on Wednesday gave preliminary approval to joining other states in creating a "cottage foods" designation. The bill allows farmers to prepare some foods in home kitchens, not commercial kitchens. The measure would apply only to small amounts of foods deemed low-risk for food contagion, such as jams or roasted chilies.

A handful of Republicans argued unsuccessfully that the designation simply sets up local regulation for farmers who shouldn't face any. Supporters replied that currently it's illegal to sell to strangers any foods prepared at home.

More than a dozen states have similar cottage food designations, but Colorado would be unusual in applying the category only to farmers.

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