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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clearwater, Florida, USA
    Posts
    128

    Smile Selling Honey Roadside

    Hi all!

    My beekeeping is going far better than expected and the harvest has been bountiful! I plan on renting a space in the fall at my local Farmer's Markets where they say they take care of the permits for those that pitch an approved tent. It's $25 a day for the space.

    BUT.....

    That is in the fall. Obviously I'm selling by word of mouth, but I have way more products (Bee Pollen, Lip Balm, Honey, Candles) than that method can account for. I just started a website as well which will be a great help down the road, but I wanted to just take my pickup truck, set up a tent and a table and put up a few signs along the roadside.

    I live in a very urban area but not far are places where roadside stands abound. Does anyone know what the regulations are for doing something like that? I wouldn't know if a permit is even required but seems likely that in this country you can't do anything without a permit. Or are people just doing it anyway and figure it's unlikely anyone would stop them?

    Any ideas how the roadside selling out of my truck thing works?

    thanks for any help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Kingsland Georgia
    Posts
    314

    Default

    We have sold roadside out of our truck here in southeast Ga. Sometimes its great, other times no one stops. I recommend a very visible signs that says local honey. Many times folks will just stop by to ask about bees. Check with state and local reguations, Georgia is diffrent then Florida. This year has been very slow for us. Not sure if its the economy or what. Local ads in your home town paper would reach many.......my 2cents

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Norton, MA, USA
    Posts
    52

    Default

    My town hall told me I could keep bees but I needed a food permit to sell honey. I have since been told (not by town officials though) that that is untrue...one more thing I have to research. Definitely do research on it.

    No Farmer's Markets in the area that start earlier than the fall?

    What about online sales? Gosh, Clearwater Florida....set up a cabana on the beach! I'd buy lip balm from you if I were visiting!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clearwater, Florida, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluidshay View Post
    What about online sales? Gosh, Clearwater Florida....set up a cabana on the beach! I'd buy lip balm from you if I were visiting!!
    LOL, Yes, my wife is the lipbalm queen and that is exactly what I was thinking, hang out near the beach ;-) No doubt the high rent types wouldn't find it that amusing however.

    I guess I'll just try Clearwater's .org site and try to find a phone number and just start asking around. ;-/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default

    If you are thinking farmers market check the rules there as well....here in OK to sell at a farmers market you have to extract your honey in a state approved kitchen and you can imagine what that entails.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Fort Valley, Georgia
    Posts
    10

    Default

    I would go down to my county offices and see what the regs are.
    Also visit your states department of ag and see what they say about the sale of honey. Your state department of ag will know all the rules and regulations about food sales and what you have to comply with there.

    The local county office can tell you if you need a permit to sale your wares on the side of the road and such. You may need a business license too. for the short time I was in fla there were tooooo many rules for my blood so I would check to be safe.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
    Posts
    1,398

    Smile

    Go to your state agriculture website and look for beekeeping/apiculture. You should be able to find regulations there and also the name and number for the state apicuriist.

    If no problem selling roadside, I would talk to the managers of some local stores. See if they would allow you to put out some signs and sell on their lot or near their entrance.

    You might try Wal-Mart, Sam's, corner gas stations (especially those with heavy walk-in traffic. See if you can put some in the barber shop and salon that you and your wife use. They may allow you to put in your wares and take in the money for you for a quart of honey.

    A sign in your front yard, Craig's List, local free papers and local papers that only sell stuff for people. There is one called "Penny something".

    Does your church, allow advertising for church members. Our church does. Way to help other church members.

    Hope this helps!
    De Colores,
    Ken

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Fort Valley, Georgia
    Posts
    10

    Default

    Here are your state laws and website

    For bee information contact these people.
    http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/onestop...piaryinsp.html


    For information on food safety contact people on this page.
    http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/fs/contact.html

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clearwater, Florida, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Ok, thanks for the feedback all. I looked up the official regs and I must say it is all very "small operator" unfriendly. It seems to me the best option is to just pitch a tent on the side of the road in a more spread out area and if someone stops me and asks for permits etc, just plead ignorance and pack up and leave. That is a LOT of redtape to navigate to sell a couple hundred dollars of honey otherwise ;-(

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    I must say it is all very "small operator" unfriendly.
    That way here too!
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Fort Valley, Georgia
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    You can thank our wonderful govt. bureaucrats for that.
    You are too dangerous to be producing your own food don't you know?
    If you are really small I wouldnt worry about it just do it.
    Better to ask for forgiveness than for permission.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Tamworth, NSW Australia
    Posts
    259

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Thanks to St. Ignatius for that quote! It was possibly misquoted to me by a person who had been educated in one of the good Saint's boys school, but the version he used went a bit more like this: "Better to stand and beg for forgiveness than spend your life on your knees asking for permission!"

    So let the system do its thing, there are plenty of them and they all have airconditioned motorcars for mobility, so go ahead and do what you want to do and if it is seriously improper someone will tap on your shoulder and inform you politly what the rules of the day are.

    Believe you me, the rules are a moving feast, and only very infrequently do they actually rescind one. So what happens on the ground, like in the real world and in real time, is they simply quit policing the rules that are proving to be redudnant. The rule books are littered with antiquated rules about things that are long forgotten, but they are still valid rules in the book, and even if you ask you local enforcer about that rule, he/she, may know nothing of it.

    So with beehives in Washing DC, and on the White House Lawn, things are on the turn. Heaps of rules are being abandoned worldwide by establishments everywhere. So now is the time for freedome loving people everywhere to just act on their instincts and start doing what they feel is right. The big businesses are going down in droves, and the consensus is moving in favour of those who can and will produce, so our lawmakers are caught in a cleft stick, or a Catch 22 if your prefer. Their masters in big business are too busy trying to survive to come to the rescue of the inspector on the street, and the masses are looking for a meal. What are they to do? Their kids are home waiting for a feed too!

    Reality is upon us. Beekeepers are about as real as any other class of people on this planet. So I say, we need to go for broke!

    Just don't forget to put your price up, as the value of the money is failing fast and soon enough you will be taking worthless paper or cyber entries for your very real produce.

    It is our moment!

    Cheers and good luck.

    JohnS

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clearwater, Florida, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Really, I'm so tired of all the overregulation. I just watched the excellent trilogy of dvd's of the John Adams starring Paul Giamatti. It is so bizarre how far afield this country has become in terms of restricting entrepeneurs.

    I am going with the concensus and my heart on this one...I'm just going to pop up in sensible places and I will keep doing so in various places if I run into any permit police.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hillsboro, Wisconsin, USA
    Posts
    1,672

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Quote Originally Posted by John Smith View Post
    Thanks to St. Ignatius for that quote! It was possibly misquoted to me by a person who had been educated in one of the good Saint's boys school, but the version he used went a bit more like this: "Better to stand and beg for forgiveness than spend your life on your knees asking for permission!"
    I doubt that St. Ignatius would have said that...

    "It's easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission" is often attributed to Rear Admiral Grace Hopper (one of the developers of UNIVAC I and the COBOL programming language - remember that from your programming days?).


    MM

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    248

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    I too would just set up someplace I had seen others sell produce and the like and be prepared to move along if anyone takes issue with it for any reason. The only other thing I'd add is that I would not take any more product than what I reasonably think I could sell in a day. Don't have your whole harvest in the back of the truck just in case some over-zealous cop or other official gets the idea he should confiscate your illegal wares. Similarly, keep just a few dollars worth of change close at hand and stash the rest somewhere creative--especially if you are having a good day. That way, if aforementioned official wants the proceeds too you can say that you have only sold a jar or two.
    Carl

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Tamworth, NSW Australia
    Posts
    259

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Thanks, Carl, for the tip on the over zealous official. The hostility of the Universe is moving steadily from the street urchins to the officialdom. I trust we all survive it! But we innocents need a few pointers at times to teach us who to bribe and how much.

    We recently had some major structural renovations made to our home which included much exposure to the assumed home invaders and sneak thiefs, and it was something of an eye opener that petty theft in our neighbourhood was (in our case) non existent. Only this morning have I completed putting the locks back on the windows after several weeks of them being quite accessable.

    Meanwhile, my insurance company remains the biggest thief I suffer from, and in particular with regards to motor vehicles, as my claims continue to be either highly suspicious to them or downright rejected! All because I have broken some obscure rule somewhere or breached my contract with them. I can go ten years without a claim or twenty even, but that means nothing to the computer these days.

    Goods and chattels these days may be getting so common that even crooks had rather buy new stuff than have to use my old and tattered pre-loved variety.

    Cheers,

    JohnS

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    cortland NY USA
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    I am looking at selling honey at my new road side stand this year and am going to sell word of mouth as well. i have increased my hives from 10 to 20. I was looking at increasing my hives 10 fold, but after looking at all the red tape it doesnt seam worth selling wholesale. To many greedy government regulations to keep the little man in its hole. So I am selling word of mouth and road side stand. nothing passes better than word of mouth. A lot of customers are very willing to spread the word to help there fello beekeepers! best of luck everyone!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Washington County, Maine
    Posts
    2,963

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Interesting observations on this thread. I have just about finished getting ready to have my kitchen inspected, as there are some benefits to doing things on the up and up. The big thing in my book is to remember that honey is a food product and as the processor I have an obligation to those who consume my bees' bounty (and to my own reputation) to do things in a sanitary and hygienic way.
    Master Beekeeper (EAS) and Master Gardener (U Maine CE) www.beeberrywoods.com

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Port Orange, Florida, USA
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Florida has just passed legistation allowing honey to be bottled and sold under the Cottage Industries bill. It allows a bee keeper to sell up to $15,000.00 worth of product to the public in retail sales direct to the customer. The labling requirments are the same as with any other honey lable but it also needs to state that the honey was bottled under the Cottage Industry act. I'll look around for a link to the information.
    Last edited by Beeboy01; 08-24-2011 at 08:35 PM.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida USA
    Posts
    57

    Default Re: Selling Honey Roadside

    Here is a link to the new Cottage Food Legislation for Florida.

    http://jaxbees.com/files/CottageFood...t11Revised.pdf
    Michael Leach
    www.nabeehive.com

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