Q: If I want to make homemade potato chips and package them, am I allowed to sell? Or do I need govt approval?
A: I'm not in F&B myself, but I have read up and sought professional consultation about importing and selling food in the US. I also have a corporate client (and coaching students) whose Amazon account I manage that sells coffee and have helped them with FDA registration and shipping into the US.
Anything food and drink related (ingested) that is imported into the US needs to first be registered with the US government (FDA). This is a US food safety and Homeland Security legal requirement. Not an Amazon issue, although Amazon might ask for your FDA registration certificate to be submitted if you need to be approved to sell in the Grocery category.
In order to be FDA registered, the FDA will require all the food safety information to be submitted, the package labeling must adhere to FDA food labeling requirements for ingredients and nutritional values, and you must appoint a representative that is located in the USA. You then need the FDA registration number to file FDA Prior Notice for every shipment before it leaves the port or origin, meaning if you are shipping from Singapore, you (or your shipping service) must submit FDA Prior Notice to the FDA before the shipment leaves Singapore.
I always refer my corporate clients and coaching/training students to registrarcorp.com who can help them get their FDA registration done and act as their representative agent (annual paid service).
Is all this worth it for homemade potato chips? Not to mention actual food safety liability in case anyone falls ill and blames the chips.