Hearing on March 17 at 1:30pm
Tell Senate Committee Members to Vote YES on SB 693
Senate Bill 693 (SB 693), also known as the Tennessee Food Freedom Act is before the Senate Health and Welfare Committee and is scheduled for a hearing March 17 at 1:30 pm.
SB 693 would allow the intrastate sale without regulation of “non-time/temperature control for safety” (NTTCS) homemade foods from producers, agents of the producer and third-party vendors such as retail shops and grocery stores to the consumer. NTTCS foods are foods that don’t require time or temperature control for safety to limit the growth of toxins; this definition includes fermented foods such as sauerkraut. “Homemade food item” is defined in the bill as a food item, including a non-alcoholic beverage, which is produced at the private residence of the producer.
SB 693 provides that the production and sale of homemade food items is exempt from all licensing, permitting, inspecting, packaging and labeling (other than the labeling requirements in the bill) laws of this state, except when the Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDA) is investigating a reported foodborne illness; nothing in the bill impedes the state from investigating a foodborne illness outbreak. The bill expressly preempts county, municipal and any other political jurisdiction from prohibiting and regulating the production and sale of homemade food items.
Internet and phone sales are allowed under the bill, in addition to in-person sales. Delivery can be made by a third-party carrier (such as UPS, USPS).
Current law allows the sale of basically the same foods from unlicensed producer direct to consumer so the main differences under SB 693 are that sales can take place at retail and grocery stores and that producers under the bill wouldn’t be subject to inspection except when there is an investigation into whether homemade food was the cause of illness.
Help expand access to local food.
ACTION TO TAKE
Call and/or email all members of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee asking them to vote YES on SB 693. Calls are best but please do both. You can use any of the Talking Points below. Member contact information is listed at the end of this email.
You may copy/paste this block into the “To” field to email all members:
email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
1. There is great demand for locally produced foods. Passage of SB 693 will increase access to local food for state residents.
2. The bill would expand markets for homemade food producers, increasing sales with minimal regulation and expense.
3. There are 49 states with cottage foods (homemade) laws; some of which allow the sale of more foods than SB 693 proposes to. Reports of illnesses attributed to producers operating under these laws are almost nonexistent. Homemade foods have a great track record for food safety.`
4. Passage of SB 199 will keep more of the food dollar in the community enhancing the local economy.
WAPF will send out further alerts on SB 693 as events warrant.
Tennessee Senate Health and Welfare Committee member profiles are displayed online at
CHAIR: Crowe, Rusty ( R – District 3 )
1st VICE-CHAIR: Haile, Ferrell ( R – District 18 )
Hensley, Joey ( R – District 28 )
Jackson, Ed ( R – District 27 )
Massey, Becky Duncan ( R – District 6 )
2nd VICE-CHAIR: Reeves, Shane ( R – District 14 )
Swann, Art ( R – District 2 )
Watson, Bo ( R – District 11 )
Yarbro, Jeff ( D – District 21 )
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