Illinois law revives 12-year-old’s home cupcake business after being shut down

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A 12-year-old entrepreneur got her home-based cupcake business back after the State of Illinois shut it down for not complying with local laws.

Chloe Stirling from a city in southwest Illinois had her own baking business called “Hey Cupcake,” which she ran out of her family’s home kitchen for two years. Early in 2014 the Madison County Department of Health shut her down because she was not meeting health code regulations.

On Wednesday, June 11, 2014 Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed the “Cupcake Bill” into law, which creates a new category for “home kitchen operators” and loosens regulations them, according to the Office of Governor Pat Quinn.

The “Cupcake Bill” applies to operations that make less than $1,000 from producing food at home to sell by themselves, or for religious, charitable, or nonprofit organizations.

Home kitchen operators cannot be shut down or regulated by local governments or health departments unless there is a complaint or health safety issue.

“When all of this started, we didn’t know what to do,” Chloe said. “In the end, we made it work so lots of home cooks can do what they love just like me. I am really happy that a bunch of people worked together to find a solution and I can’t wait to get back to baking!”

Chloe’s mom Heather Stirling said her daughter’s business “is her niche,” describing Chloe as “one of a kind.”

The bill went into effect immediately.