How To Start A Gourmet Food Business

Learn about how to start a gourmet food business by following some of these savvy tips. A gourmet food business can be an exciting venture for anyone with food service training. Those with an unusual recipes or product that might be in demand can have a winning idea. Getting  professional advice and training is important in today's competitive market. Also having capital or money to invest in the business is important because many gourmet food business do not make money right away.

You will need:

  • food product or recipe
  • process authority to help package the product
  • label and bottle
  • distribution channels
  1. Develop a product. Decide on a product like baked goods, condiments, frozen bread or snack foods. Research the process of making the product, safety, issues and costs. Perfect the recipe and test it out on friends and family. Gather feedback about its quality and the demand for such a product. Research the competition. Find out the competition and what they are doing to sell and market their products. Strive to fill a niche that is not over run with competitors.
  2. Hire a Process Authority. This company will test your recipe, develop it for safety standards, package it, and ship it out for you. They can help you determine the costs of making and selling the product. Product safety for consumers is an issue that this company addresses. They will help you test the recipe and package it with safety in mind.  
  3. Write a business plan. Decide what type of business you want to have. Think about insurance and other financial issues you must address. Seek professional advice. Contact state agricultural organizations. Consult  with the small business administration, economic development agencies for help with getting started. Many organizations help members with marketing, insurance, promotion, and product safety. Many states have gourmet or speciality food associations. Decide on a name for you product. Consult the FDA food labeling organization to find out if the product name is taken and regulations on labeling and design.  
  4. Design an attractive label for your product.  The label is one of the trademarks or symbols of your product. Invest in a simple attractive design. Nutrition analysis and barcodes are an important part of getting a product on the market. Decide whether you want to have a nutritional label put on your product. If you want a barcode it costs about $500 dollars and most supermarkets require it for selling the product. Invest in a good label and package to sell your product.
  5. Develop a marketing plan. Develop a good marketing plan that promotes your product to customers. Use word of mouth, advertising, email and a website to keep the consumer aware of your product. Again, find way to use your product and demonstrate it in supermarkets and at food trade shows. You will meet consumers and business people who will help you succeed.

Tip: Remember that starting a gourmet food business requires a good product and product testing. You will have to go through some channels to have the product approved and manufactured. It can take many months of persistence and patience but in the end you may have a winning business idea that brings in revenue.

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