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Bill Would Ease Regulations For Farmers Market Vendors

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WBBM) – What’s better than buying locally-produced food at a farmers’ market?

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Dave Dahl reports, the Illinois State Senate has passed a bill attempting to make things easier for more sellers.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Dave Dahl reports

Under the bill, certain non-hazardous foods will be exempt from much inspection, as long as the seller can certify it as homemade.

The bill also requires those producing the food to hold sanitary licenses, label items correctly, and include a label identifying their products as homemade and thus not subject to local or state inspection.

Sponsor state Sen. Dave Koehler (D-Peoria) explained what “non-hazardous” might mean.

“A non-hazardous food might be an apple pie that you’ve baked. A hazardous food might be a banana cream pie that has milk or eggs or cream in it, and that would be a different kind of a category there,” Koehler said. “It also has to do with the pH balance in terms of the food.”

Among Koehler’s pursuits away from the state Senate – he and his wife own an organic bakery in Peoria.

Several Farmers Markets in Chicago start later this month. For a complete listing by location, day of the week and hours, click here.

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