The county Board of Supervisors has officially signed off on allowing residents of the unincorporated area to sell food products they make at home.
New state laws that took effect Jan. 1 allow residents to do so currently, but a county ordinance was needed to create a permitting process that regulates the sale of homemade foods, either within the home, to wholesalers or at markets.
The board approved the ordinance Tuesday 3-0, with Supervisors Bill Dodd and Brad Wagenknecht absent. The Planning Commission recommended approval in January.
Supporters of the laws view selling homemade foods as a way to support the local food movement, which promotes the purchase and sale of foods and ingredients sourced to Napa and nearby counties.
Interested residents will go through an administrative permitting process that requires them to minimize the impacts of traffic, parking and visitors.
They’ll be able to produce the food products only in a kitchen, with use of a storage space, according to the state laws.
Deputy Planning Director John McDowell said staff plan to revisit the ordinance next year to see how it’s working.
McDowell said Napa County’s ordinance prohibits visitors from dining within the homes, so it won’t create a loophole to some of the visitation restrictions in the Winery Definition Ordinance.
“I think this is a good first step into the pond,” McDowell said Tuesday.
The state laws limit the type of food products for sale to:
• Baked goods without cream or meat
• Dried fruit or pasta
• Baking mixes
• Pies, empanadas, and tamales that contain fruit
• Granola or cereals
• Honey, jams, jellies and preserves
• Nuts and popcorn
• Vinegar and mustard
• Roasted coffees or dried teas