Regulations in Tennessee for a Home-Based Bakery Business

by Mary Jane; Updated September 26, 2017

Aspiring home-based bakery owners must follow Tennessee state regulations before selling and distributing baked goods. A home-based bakery business must follow the same regulations as other Tennessee businesses, which are required to register as a business and acquire a federal employer identification number. The state also must inspect and approve the baking environment to protect the health of consumers.

Business Registration

Home-based business owners in Tennessee must register a bakery business if the business follows specific structures. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, home-based bakery businesses that are corporations, limited liability companies or limited liability partnerships must register with the Tennessee secretary of state and file an assumed name form. Sole proprietors and general partnerships do not have to register with the state for a business license.

Federal Employer Identification Number

Sole proprietors often use their Social Security numbers as a method of identification for taxes and business licenses. The state of Tennessee requires all home-based business owners to obtain a federal employer identification number, or FEIN, from the IRS, if they do not wish to use their Social Security number as a method of identification. The FEIN is used for practical business operations, such as getting additional business licenses, opening a bank account and completing tax returns. The state of Tennessee requires all partnerships and corporations to file for a FEIN.

Home-Based Business Permits

Home-based bakery owners must comply with county zoning and building code laws, which differ throughout the state. In addition, bakery owners must obtain business insurance in case of a fire or property damage to the home. Homeowners insurance does not cover home-based businesses.

Tennessee Food Safety Certification Course

Those who prepare food in their homes more than six times a year with the intention of sale and distribution must complete the Food and Safety Certificate Course offered at the University of Tennessee Department of Food Science and Technology. Similar courses are also available within the state. In addition, the Tennessee Division of General Environmental Health is responsible for inspecting the baking establishment, even if it is a private kitchen. Approval from the division is required to legally operate a bakery in Tennessee. The inspection ensures that a bakery follows sanitary cooking practices and food service regulations.

About the Author

Based in Toronto, Mary Jane has been writing for online magazines and databases since 2002. Her articles have appeared on the Simon & Schuster website and she received an editor's choice award in 2009. She holds a Master of Arts in psychology of language use from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.