Photo by Andrew Richards
Tom Gibbons talks about changing the Cottage Food section of the Food Handling Regulation Enforcement Act while County Board and Health Committee member Roger Alons looks on.
WOOD RIVER – Tom Gibbons is “pro-cupcake.”
The Madison County state’s attorney met with the County Health Department and Committee today to discuss talking with state legislators to amend the Cottage Food section of the Food Handling Regulation Enforcement Act.
The move comes as a result of the Health Department shutting down 11-year-old Chloe Stirling’s cupcake business Jan. 27 because she did not have a certified kitchen and was selling baked goods to the public.
Stirling, of Troy, had been making cupcakes and cakes out of her parents’ Ched and Heather's house for friends, family, benefits and other special events for two years before the county told her to shut down.
Gibbons said he, Jason Spengler, CEO of the Spengler Co. Plumbing, Heating and Cooling in O'Fallon, Ill., Heather Stirling and Madison County health officials Toni Corona and Mary Cooper met recently to discuss plans for adding a kitchen for Chloe.
Thousands of dollars have been donated for the effort through an online fund-raising drive, Gibbons said.
Gibbons proposed adding eight words to the Cottage Food section. “The food is to be sold at a farmers’ market OR IN THE HOME WHERE IT IS PREPARED.”
“We’re stuck with the laws Springfield gives us,” Gibbons said. “If I find something that needs change, I want to change it for the better.”
Gibbons said he plans on calling state legislators today and Thursday to see what he can find out in regards to proposing the amendment.