Thank you, Health Department! I was really worried. I mean, 11 year olds baking cupcakes sounds pretty dangerous to me. That’s definitely a major public health concern. There’s no way we as individuals could ever take care of our selves on this one. So thank you for saving us from the great danger that could have come from eating a cupcake that Chloe Stirling had baked.
Chloe has the great misfortune of living in Illinois, where the health department won’t allow her to operate a cupcake business out of her family’s kitchen; they told her she’d need a separate one. So now, instead of being able to save for a car and raise money for charity (the two things she seems to have been doing with her small cupcake business), Chloe will have to shut down. She won’t be learning about business and entrepreneurialism. She won’t be contributing to her community through charitable donation. She won’t be earning rather than just asking for a hand-out from her parents. Maybe she can instead spend those after school hours playing video games.
In North Carolina, fortunately, the rules aren’t quite so strict. I have a friend who operates a small business much like Chloe’s out of her home and is able to do so legally. That’s a good thing for her, and it’s a good thing for everyone who eats her cakes. Delicious, great prices, and beautiful.
Of course, people aren’t getting sick in North Carolina from cupcakes baked by small entrepreneurs. But these sorts of cottage food laws aren’t unique to Illinois. Every state has them, some more friendly to small businesses than others. North Carolina’s are pretty good, and we should keep them that way and even lighten regulation where possible, allowing small businesses to thrive, kids like Chloe to make and save money, and people like my friend to supplement family income. Those are all good things.