(Revised 3/5/10)

The information in this document has been prepared to provide basic information for those persons desiring to manufacture, process, pack or distribute honey or honey products within Louisiana primarily for wholesale and institutional distribution. The requirements specified herein are minimal and are not intended to replace or supersede applicable regulations. Complete rules and regulations pertaining to manufacture, processing, packing, holding of food products are found in Title 51, Part VI of the Louisiana Administrative Code.

PERMITSTitle 51 of the Louisiana Administrative Code mandates that all persons packing honey for sale to the public apply to the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Office of Public Health, Food and Drug Unit for a Permit to Operate. Prior to issuance of a permit, the facility must comply with the following:

  1. Plans and Specifications—Submit plans for the honey house or packing plant to your local Food and Drug sanitarian for compliance review. Plans should be drawn to scale and should include the following minimum information: 1) a plot or site plan page, 2) a top elevation page showing layout and dimensions of all rooms, location of all doors and window, and position of processing equipment, 3) a schedule of surface materials including specifications on surfaces and coatings, 4) a plumbing riser diagram showing potable water supply lines, sewage and drain lines including floor drains, placement of sinks, location of hand lavatories and restroom fixtures, 5) an electrical diagram showing location, numbers of lighting fixtures, and shielding (where applicable).

    In addition, the local Parish Health Unit should be contacted regarding the approval status of the source of potable water and the method of wastewater disposal. For new construction, if a sewer is not available, it may be required to apply for and install an onsite wastewater disposal system. A link to the locations of Parish Health Units may be found here:

  2. Facility Inspection—After plans and specifications have been reviewed and approved and construction of the facility has been completed or is near completion, an inspection of the facility shall be made to verify compliance and to accept the necessary applications for permit registration or licensure and the required permit fees.

  3. Application—File an application form along with the required permit fee. Year- round permit fees are $175. Seasonal operation fees are $15 per month with an annual minimum fee of $45.

4. Product Registration—See below.

PRODUCT / LABEL REGISTRATION: As required by the State Food, Drug and Cosmetic Law, each manufacturer, processor, packer or private-label distributor of honey in package form must register each separate and distinct product annually. Firms shall submit to the Food & Drug Unit a complete Application for Registration Form [FD-9(N)] together with copies of labels for each item and applicable registration fees. The registration fee is currently $20.00 per separate and distinct product up to a maximum charge of $200.00 per year. Please note that more than 10 separate package types may be registered by a given corporation—and copies of all labels must be sent to OPH—but only the first 10 types are charged a registration fee.

LABELS / LABELING: All processed food products sold within the state must be labeled in accordance with applicable labeling rules and regulations. The submission of printer’s proofs of proposed labels to the Food & Drug Unit for review and approval prior to printing final labels is highly recommended. (Failure to do so may result in reordering labels which are determined to be out of compliance with state and federal regulations.) All food labels must bear the following mandatory information:

1. Statement of Identity. The common or standard name of the product (e.g., “strained honey”). A honey may be labelled with the name of a particular plant or blossom only if the honey producer is capable of determining that said plant or blossom constitutes the chief floral source for that honey.

2. List of Ingredients. If the food is composed of two or more ingredients, the package or container shall bear a listing of each ingredient in descending order of predominance by weight. The ingredient declaration may appear on either the principal display panel or the information panel. Federal labeling regulations now require full disclosure of all ingredients including an ingredient which itself contains two or more ingredients. Ingredients shall be listed by the common or usual name (no brand names). Chemical preservatives shall be declared by their common or usual name and include a separate statement of the functional use of the chemical preservative. Example: “sodium benzoate as a preservative”.

  1. Name and Place of Business Of Manufacturer, Packer or Distributor. The label must specify conspicuously the name and place of business of the manufacturer, processor, packer, or distributor. This information may appear on either the principal display panel or the information panel. In cases where the food is not manufactured by the person whose name appears on the label, the name shall be qualified by a phrase that reveals the connection such person has with the food; such as “Manufactured for__________”, “Distributed by_________”, “Packed for__________” or any other wording that expresses the facts; however, the name of the actual manufacturer or packer shall be furnished to the department upon request.

  2. Net Quantity of Contents. Each unit package of a processed food shall bear a statement of the net quantity of contents. Net quantity of contents declaration criteria are as follows:

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Placement of Declaration

Lower 30% of Principal Display Panel in lines generally parallel to the base of the package or container.

Declaration terms

Weight, measure, or numerical count or a combination of numerical count and weight or measure.


If food is a liquid

Use units of measure: fluid ounces, pints, quarts, gallons. Must include Metric equivalent: Net 12 fl oz (355 mL). Net Contents 1 gal (3.79 L), Net 500 mL (1 pt. 0.9 fl oz). Periods, commas after words are optional.

5. Print / Type Size Specifications. The net quantity of contents declaration must be in letters and numerals in a type size established in relationship to the area of the principal display panel of the package and shall be uniform for all packages of substantially the same size by complying with the following specifications:

Area of Principal Display Panel

Minimum Type Size

5 inor less
> 5 in
but not more than 25 in2
> 25 inbut not more than 100 in2
> 100 inbut not more than 400 inMore than 100 in2
If declaration is blown, embossed, or molded onto glass or plastic surface.

Not less than 1/16 inch in height
Not less than 1/8 inch in height
Not less than 3/16 inch in height
Not less than 1⁄4 inch in height
Not less than one-half inch in height Increase type sizes specified above by 1/16 of an inch.
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6. Nutrition Facts Labeling. Nutrition information relating to food must be provided for all products intended for human consumption and offered for sale unless a specific exemption is provided for. If an operation employs fewer than 10 full-time employees and sells fewer than 10,000 units of a product per annum, it is granted an automatic exemption. If an operation employs fewer than 100 full-time employees and sells fewer than 100,000 units of a product per annum, it will be granted an exemption provided that a request is filed annually with FDA. A nutrient content claim, health claim or any other nutrition information on the label or in labeling or advertising in any context, and in any form of expression, implicit, as well as explicit, shall negate any exemption and subject a food to providing nutrition information in accordance with applicable regulations. Please see for further details.

BUILDINGS. All buildings used for processing, packing or re-packing honey shall be well-lit with an intensity of not less than forty (40) foot-candles on all work surfaces and well-ventilated through means of forced-air ventilation to remove excessive heat, steam, moisture, vapors, smoke and dusts. All floors, walls, ceilings, work tables, food contact surfaces, and other fixtures must be maintained in such a condition that they may be readily made clean and sanitary. Floor drains adequate in size (4” recommended—follow Louisiana State Plumbing Code regulations) and number properly trapped and vented shall be provided in those areas of food manufacturing and processing plants where water overflow is unavoidable or stationary equipment must be cleaned and sanitized in place. Where honey is extracted and bulk-packaged without treatment, both extracting and packaging may be carried out in one room. Where honey is to be extracted, treated, and packed in retail packages, two separate rooms will be required; one room is to be used for extraction and treatment of honey and the other for the packaging and storage of packing materials (labels, bottles, et cetera). Work surfaces must be smooth, easily cleanable surfaces (stainless steel, aluminum, smooth non-porous formica in certain applications). Wall and ceilings must be of smooth, easily cleanable materials, light in color (reinforced fiberglass panels, concrete block with sealed pores and mortar, smooth ceramic tile, solid plywood sealed with epoxy paint, 1⁄2 inch sheetrock wallboard in certain areas of plant not subject to exposure to 3 moisture or heavy washing). Floors shall be of sealed concrete, quarry tile, or other smooth easily cleanable materials impermeable to water.

WATER SUPPLY. An ample supply of potable water delivered under pressure shall be provided on the premises for drinking, washing of equipment and utensils, supplying toilet and lavatory fixtures, and for other necessary purposes. Potable water supplies shall not be cross- connected to any other supply. Water supply lines connected to processing equipment such as picking tables, bottle/can washers, cookers, retorts, or other similar equipment must have water lines protected against possible back-siphonage or back flow. Water supplies must be evaluated and approved by sanitarians from the local Parish Health Unit.

SEWAGE AND WASTE DISPOSAL. Sewage disposal and treatment methods must be evaluated and approved by sanitarians from the local Parish Health Unit. Solid and liquid industrial wastes must be disposed of or discharged in accordance with regulations set forth by the Department of Environmental Quality.


Toilet facilities. Each plant shall provide its employees with toilet and associated hand washing lavatory facilities within the plant in accordance with Part XIV of the State Sanitary Code, Louisiana State Plumbing Code, 2000 Edition Section 407 entitled “Minimum Plumbing Fixtures”. The facilities shall be maintained in a sanitary condition and kept in good repair at all times. Doors to toilet rooms shall be self-closing and not open directly into areas where food is exposed to airborne contamination except in the case where double doors are provided or a positive air flow systems are used.

Hand Washing Lavatories. Facilities for hand washing and, where needed, sanitizing hand dip stations, shall be provided at each location in the plant where good sanitary practices require employees to wash and dry hands, and at least in areas where foods are handled. Hand washing lavatories shall be provided in numbers as specified in Part XIV of the State Sanitary Code, Louisiana State Plumbing Code, 2000 Edition Section 407 entitled “Minimum Plumbing Fixtures”. Hand washing lavatories shall be supplied with hot and cold running water under pressure with mixer type faucets for adjusting water temperature. Soap and single service disposable towels or forced air drying devices shall be provided at hand lavatories.

Sink Facilities. Sinks adequate in size and number must be provide within food manufacturing and processing plants for washing utensils and pieces of equipment that are moveable or can be readily disassembled for cleaning and not intended to be cleaned in place. Sink compartments must be large enough to accommodate (not completely submerge) the washing of the largest piece of moveable equipment or utensil. Sinks should be constructed of stainless steel or high-density food grade polymer plastic. Sinks constructed of galvanized steel are not acceptable.

a. 3-Compartment Sink: Facilities engaged in the manufacture, processing and packing of food products must provide sinks with three compartments. Each compartment is to be designated for a specific purpose: Wash Rinse Sanitize Each sink compartment is to be provided with hot and cold running water delivered under pressure. Sinks are to be properly installed and shall be trapped and vented. Each compartment is to be provided with a stopper (cloths are not permitted for this purpose).

b. Utility Sink Facilities. Plants that use wet mopping for cleaning floor surfaces should provide at least one utility sink OR curbed cleaning facility with a floor drain for the cleaning of mops, buckets, pails, scrub brushes or other similar cleaning tools and for the disposal of mop water or similar liquid wastes. The use of lavatories, utensil and equipment washing sinks, or food preparation sinks for this purpose is prohibited.

c. Grease interceptor/Separators. Grease interceptors or separators may be required to be installed in the waste line leading from sinks, drains, or other fixtures in food manufacturing or processing facilities where grease, grit, oil, broken glass, or other viscous or solid substances can be introduced into the drainage system in quantities that can affect line stoppage or hinder sewage disposal. Check with your local parish or city plumbing authority to determine if the installation of a grease interceptor or a separator is mandatory for your specific operation.


Machinery, Equipment and Utensils. All machinery, equipment and utensils shall be arranged and installed so as to be easily accessible for cleaning and maintenance and shall be kept clean and in good repair. An ample supply of steam, hot and cold water, sanitizing agent, hoses, brushes or other utensils necessary for proper cleaning of equipment shall be made available. Hose ends or nozzles shall not be allowed to lie on the floor but shall be hung or racked when not in use. Open ends of hoses or food transfer lines shall be capped, plugged or otherwise protected from contamination when not in use. Machinery, equipment and utensils must be designed and constructed so as to be easily cleanable and shall not contaminate food, food ingredients, or packaging material with lubricants, fuels, metal fragments, paint flakes or other contaminants.

Cleaning and Sanitizing of Equipment and Utensils. Food contact surfaces of equipment and utensils shall be cleaned as often as necessary to avoid contamination of food, food ingredients and food packaging materials. Food contact surfaces of equipment and utensils used in the processing and packaging of foods subject to contamination by harmful microbes shall be washed with a suitable detergent solution, rinsed with potable water and then sanitized. Non-food contact surfaces of equipment and utensils shall be cleaned as frequently as necessary to minimize accumulations of dust, dirt, food particles, and other debris. Equipment and utensils shall be air-dried after washing, rinsing and sanitizing. All chemical sanitizing agents shall be prepared and applied in accordance with instructions on the product label.

STORAGE PRACTICES. Food, food ingredients and food-packaging materials shall be stored and handled in such a manner so as not to allow cross-contamination or to interfere with sanitary operation of the plant. Food, food ingredients, and packaging materials should be stored at least 18 inches from walls and 6 inches above floors to allow for proper inspection, cleaning and pest control measures and to allow for movement of air under and around stored food products. Chemicals such as cleaning compounds, lubricants, solvents, et cetera shall not be stored adjacent to or above food, food contact surfaces or food packaging materials and should be kept in a separate designated room or area. Pesticide compounds should also be stored away from food, food contact surfaces and food packaging materials in a locked cabinet under control of supervisory staff or plant management.

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