Home preparation of food
The Law Department frequently receives enquiries as to whether or not Congregations may allow food which has been prepared at home to be brought to the Church for consumption or sale. There is no outright ban on this. However, assessments as to risk must be carried out.
While there would normally be no problem with cakes which do not have high-risk ingredients, such as fresh cream, there may be a degree of risk with all other foods and, as a general rule, it is safer to avoid bringing in high-risk foods which have been prepared at home. Such items should therefore be prepared within the church premises or be bought in from commercial sources.
Whether procedures must be applied and documentation kept in respect of low-risk items such as cakes will depend on the circumstances. If ‘home cooking' is being donated in connection with an event, then it may be appropriate to record the source and, of course, items should then be handled and stored safely.
There may be labelling requirements (see section below) so far as items such as jams and cakes sold at church fetes and the like are concerned.