2002-S 2444A
Enacted 06/28/2002

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Introduced By: Senators Sosnowski, Breene, Gibbs, Walaska, and Kells


Date Introduced: January 31, 2002

It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:

SECTION 1. Section 21-27-1 of the General Laws in Chapter 21-27 entitled "Sanitation in Food Establishments" is hereby amended to read as follows:

21-27-1. Definitions. -- Unless otherwise specifically provided herein, the following definitions shall apply to this chapter:

(1) The word "department" shall be construed to mean the state department of health.

(2) The word "director" shall be construed to mean the director of the state department of health or the director's duly appointed agents.

(3) The word "person" shall be construed to mean any individual, firm, co-partnership, association, or private or municipal corporation.

(4) The word "approved" shall be construed to mean approved by the director.

(5) The word "food" shall be construed to mean: (A) articles used for food or drink for man or other animals, (B) chewing gum, and (C) articles used for components of any such article.

(6) The term "food business" shall be construed to mean and include any establishment or place, whether fixed or mobile, where food or ice is held, processed, manufactured, packaged, prepared, displayed, served, transported, or sold.

(7) The word "processor" shall be construed to mean one who combines, handles, manufactures or prepares, packages, and stores food products.

(8) The word "wholesale" shall be construed to mean when eighty percent (80%) or more of the business is for resale purposes.

(9) The word "retail" shall be construed to mean when eighty percent (80%) or more of sales are made directly to consumers.

(10) The term "food service establishment" shall mean any fixed or mobile restaurant; coffee shop; cafeteria; short-order cafe; luncheonette; grill; tearoom; sandwich shop; soda fountain; tavern; bar; cocktail lounge; night club; roadside stand; industrial feeding establishment; private, public or nonprofit organization or institution routinely serving food; catering kitchen; commissary or similar place in which food or drink is prepared for sale or for service on the premises or elsewhere; and any other eating or drinking establishment or operation where food is served or provided for the public with or without charge.

(11) The word "warehouse" shall be construed to mean a place for the storage of dried, fresh, or frozen food or food products, not including those areas associated within or directly part of a food service establishment or retail market.

(12) The word "commissary" shall be construed to mean a central processing establishment where food is prepared for sale or service off the premises or by mobile vendor.

(13) The term "retail peddler" shall be construed to mean a food business which sells meat, seafood, and dairy products directly to the consumer, house to house or in a neighborhood.

(14) The term "mobile food service unit" shall be construed to mean a unit that prepares and/or sells food products for direct consumption.

(15) The term "vending machine site or location" means the room, enclosure, space, or area where one or more vending machines are installed and/or operated.

(16) The term "operator" in relation to food vending machines means any person who by contract, agreement, lease, rental, or ownership sells food from vending machines.

(17) The term "roadside farmstand" means a stand or location adjacent to a farm where produce grown only on that farm is sold at the time of harvest.

(18) The term "farmers market" means a market where two (2) or more farmers are selling produce exclusively grown on their own farms on a retail basis to consumers. Excluded from this term is any market where farmers or others are selling produce at wholesale and/or any market in which any individual is selling produce not grown on his or her own farm.

(19) The term "farm home food manufacture" means the production in accordance with the requirements of section 21-27-6.1 of food for retail sale in a residential kitchen on a farm which produces agricultural products for human consumption and the operator of which is eligible for exemption from the sales and use tax in accordance with subsection 44-18-30(33).

SECTION 2. Chapter 21-27 of the General Laws entitled "Sanitation in Food Establishments" is hereby amended by adding thereto the following section:

21-27-6.1. Farm home food manufacture. -- Notwithstanding the other provisions of this chapter, the department of health shall permit farm home food manufacture and the sale of the products of farm home food manufacture at farmers' markets, farmstands, and other markets and stores operated by farmers for the purpose of the retail sale of the products of Rhode Island farms, provided that the requirements of this section are met.

(1) The farm home food products shall be produced in a kitchen that is on the premises of a farm and meets the standards for kitchens as provided for in minimum housing standards, adopted pursuant to chapter 45-24.2 and housing maintenance and occupancy code, adopted pursuant to chapter 45-24.3, and in addition the kitchen shall:

(i) Be equipped at minimum with either a two (2) compartment sink or a dishwasher that reaches one hundred fifty (150) degrees Fahrenheit after the final rinse and drying cycle and a one (1) compartment sink;

(ii) Have sufficient area or facilities, such as portable dish tubs and drain boards, for the proper handling of soiled utensils prior to washing and of cleaned utensils after washing so as not to interfere with safe food handling; equipment, utensils, and tableware shall be air dried;

(iii) Have drain boards and food preparation surfaces that shall be of a nonabsorbent, corrosion resistant material such as stainless steel, formica or other chip resistant, nonpitted surface;

(iv) Have self-closing doors for bathrooms that open directly into the kitchen.

(v) If farm is on private water supply it must be tested once per year.

(2) The farm home food products are prepared and produced ready for sale under the following conditions:

(i) Pets are kept out of food preparation and food storage areas at all times;

(ii) Cooking facilities shall not be used for domestic food purposes while farm home food products are being prepared;

(iii) Garbage is placed and stored in impervious covered receptacles before it is removed from the kitchen, which removal shall be at least each day that the kitchen is used for farm home food manufacture;

(iv) Any laundry facilities which may be in the kitchen shall not be used during farm home food manufacture;

(v) Recipe(s) for each farm home food product with all the ingredients and quantities listed, and processing times and procedures, are maintained in the kitchen for review and inspection.

(vi) List ingredients on product.

(vii) Label with farm name, address and telephone number.

(3) Farm home food manufacture shall be limited to the production of nonpotentially hazardous food and foods that do not require refrigeration, including:

(i) Jams, jellies, preserves and acid foods, such as vinegars, that are prepared using fruits, vegetables and/or herbs that have been grown locally;

(ii) Double crust pies that are made with fruit grown locally;

(iii) Yeast breads;

(iv) Maple syrup from the sap of trees on the farm or of trees within a twenty (20) mile radius of the farm;

(v) Candies and fudges;

(vi) Dried herbs and spices.

(4) Each farm home kitchen shall be registered with the department of health and shall require a notarized affidavit of compliance, in such form as the department may require, from the owner of the farm that the requirements of this section have been met and the operation of the kitchen shall be in conformity with the requirements of this section. A certificate of registration shall be issued by the department upon the payment of a fifty dollar ($50.00) fee and the submission of an affidavit of compliance. The certificate of registration shall be valid for one (1) year after the date of issuance; provided, however, that the certificate may be revoked by the director at any time for noncompliance with the requirements of the section. The certificate of registration, with a copy of the affidavit of compliance, shall be kept in the kitchen where the farm home food manufacture takes place. The director of health shall have the authority to develop and issue a standard form for the affidavit of compliance to be used by persons applying for a certificate of registration; said form shall impose no requirements or certifications beyond those set forth in this section and paragraph (19) of section 21-27-1. No such certificates of registration shall be issued by the department prior to September 1, 2002.

(5) Income from farm home food manufacture shall not be included in the calculation of farm income for the purposes of obtaining an exemption from the sales and use tax pursuant to subsection 44-18-30(33), nor shall any equipment, utensils, or supplies acquired for the purpose of creating or operating farm home food manufacture be exempt from the sales and use tax as provided for in subsection 44-18-30(33).

SECTION 3. This act shall take effect upon passage.

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