The Occasional Joke

Nurse: Patient's name?

Centurion: Marcus Licinius Crassus

Nurse: And his date of birth?

Centurion: 115 BC.

Nurse: All right. And what is he here for?

Centurion: Cataphract surgery.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Missed this one

For many years, especially while I was an active Food Gatherers volunteer, we were kept aware of the need to distinguish between prepared food -- actually cooked dishes -- that came from a state-inspected commercial kitchen and food that did not.  The state Department of Agriculture needed to sign off on your home made granola bars, if you were going to sell or donate them, just as though you were a restaurant or something.

Somehow without my noticing, that's changed.  We now have a see-how-you-like-it law that lets you play around with producing food for sale, if you have less than $15,000 presumably a year, in revenue.  All you have to do is label it "Made in a home kitchen that has not been inspected by the Michigan Department of Agriculture."

Interesting.  I would not have predicted that the DoA would ever let go of any of its power, especially given the misguided zeal it exhibits in tracking down evil providers of non-factory-farm products and even on-the-side ventures like smoking meats.  The law does seem to balance the needs of early-days business plans with the unquestionable dangers of inexpert food safety -- there are things I wouldn't try that just came out of somebody's kitchen, myself, just because I know how casual my own approach to temperatures and cleanliness has been.  Thoughts? Step in the right direction or invitation to pandemics?

1 comment:

  1. Wheee! Good to see you up & about Joe! spiffy! :D

    Overall, I think it's great! It's a way for struggling michigan residents to try & supplement their income. It also goes hand-in-hand with the MMP, opening the door for caregivers to legally provide medibles!

    On the other hand, looking at the list, it's rather restrictive in what's "allowed" for sale.

    I admit, I'd be loathe to be the guinea pig buying the sandwich from some Joe Schmoe (well, I don't eat carbs, anyways ;), but really, is it *that* different than all the vendor carts in big cities? And, c'mon, who hasn't had a job in the food industry at some point in their life & been utterly grossed out? Do we really think the profit-hungry big corporations care more about our safety/health, versus a small, independent person, where word of mouth is everything? (I'm betting the struggling entrepreneur cares more!)

    And, hey -- opening a coffee cart at my office would be a huge hit when the current coffee stash runs out (IBM bought us, and will not provide any coffee/tea/etc, no more subsidized sodas, etc)