Opening a home-based business in Canada
September 16, 2013 2:30 PM   Subscribe

I know a woman who is extremely talented in making baked desserts. She wants to open a home-based business. How can she go about doing that in a city like Toronto? Are there any legal/accounting stuff that she needs to know about beforehand? Is there some sort of governmental health supervision program that needs to see the house where she does her work? Can you give me some tips on how she can go about selling her product legally?
posted by omar.a to Work & Money (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
It depends on the size and scale of the business.

In British Columbia, home-based businesses selling at community markets (ie, a weekend market with casual vendors where they shut down the street) selling pre-made products are required to sign up with whaterver org is organizing the street market; these orgs are typically regulated by the regional health authority (which runs the hospitals, employs the chief medical officer, and conducts food and safety inspections).

The vendors are vetted by whatever org is overseeing the market, and must provide a list of ingredients. And that's it.

Just looking at Victoria BC, commercial kitchens are actually listed on a website.

I don't know what the criteria is for needing to be inspected, but I did notice that there are shared commercial kitchens that are inspected, so you could rent space if your operation became big enough.
posted by KokuRyu at 3:21 PM on September 16, 2013


The government has compiled all kinds of information. (see: here)

She may want to start selling informally and make sure her product is marketable - family and friends if it's a cake baking op or getting a booth at a craft/DIY fair which may have it's own licensing. Once she knows it's worth it, then looking at the trouble of licenses and inspections. She should keep track of what she sells (ex. in a log book) and declare it as other income at the end of the year if she is being CRA compliant (but has not registered herself as a business - at which point she needs to fill out a report of business activity and declare it as business income).
posted by skermunkil at 5:00 PM on September 16, 2013


Thank you for your answers and resources. Much appreciated :)
posted by omar.a at 8:45 AM on September 20, 2013


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