The City of Denver could become one big farmer’s market after the City Council recently approved a law that allows Denver residents to sell from their homes fresh produce they have grown themselves and cottage foods such as jams and honey they have made in their home kitchens.
“Denver has always been known as a city that appreciates ‘farm-to-table’ and using fresh produce and locally sourced foods, but this new law creates a whole new level of urban farming that will allow the city to become one big farmer’s market,” said Richard Scharf, president and CEO of Visit Denver.
Under the new law, which takes effect today (Friday), Denver residents will have to purchase a permit, but then will be able to sell from their home raw and uncut fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs that were grown by the seller either on site or in a community garden.
They will also be able to sell whole eggs produced by chickens or ducks kept by the seller at home, or “cottage foods,” which are low-risk, unrefrigerated food products made on-site such as spices, teas, honey, jams and certain baked goods. People can sell from inside or outside their home from 8 a.m. to dusk and can sell up to $5,000 of goods a year.
“Denver has become a leader in urban farming,” Scharf said, noting that two years ago the Colorado Convention Center opened the Blue Bear Farm on the grounds of the Convention Center and is now growing 5,000 pounds of fresh fruits, vegetables and spices used in the convention center’s kitchens. “Many city restaurants have already put in their own gardens and farms, and now they will be able to buy vegetables, eggs, jams, and fruits grown right in the neighborhood.”
For more information, including how to secure a permit, a list of permissible cottage foods and tips for your home garden, visit www.denvergov.org/homebusiness. The sale of marijuana or marijuana-infused products is not allowed.
Additional resources are also available at the Colorado State University Denver Extension Office, which provides resources on soil testing as well as classes on urban farming, cottage foods and food safety. Visit www.denverext.colostate.edu for more information.
For more activities in Denver go to www.visitdenver.com.