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Xander cautions against dropping your product off to a customer service rep …because it likely won’t get to the person who can give you the OK to sell your goods.But just setting up a Facebook account won’t cut it.
Make sure to run the numbers to ensure your idea has enough cash to sustain itself.
That includes the cost of ingredients, cost of packaging, cost of labels, processing fees, distribution costs, startup costs (kitchen build, permits and licenses, product tests and development, equipment), operating costs (employees, kitchen lease, taxes, permits, insurance, vehicle, services) and your estimated revenue, which will be an educated guess—and hopefully a well-informed one.
This includes things like your company name, product, net weight, nutrition panel (if you sell more than $50,000 a year), best by date (in case you have a food recall, which means it’s a good idea to keep detailed records), ingredients (you’ll also note known allergens), bar code, etc.
Suppliers will deliver everything you need to make your product, so, yes, you’ll want a good price for what they deliver—but Xander says you should also investigate to see how reliable a prospective supplier is.
Xander recalls one Kansas City entrepreneur found a great deal on jars but says the first order was wrong and the next came without lids; some jars were even broken.
A lot of this advice also goes for your distributors (aka, those people who deliver your wares).If you can provide the most complete picture of what you need in a space and how the space you plan to lease meets your legal requirements, the department can make suggestions and recommendations before you put your money down.Xander also says starting the assessment early will likely smooth out the process.That includes gas (especially if you’re running a food truck), vehicle maintenance and the cost of storing your food. Xander says some food business owners are puzzled why they don’t make a profit because they forget to factor in these key costs.Putting your product in stores can be a great way to make your product more available to a bigger audience.Time is money, especially when you have a perishable product, so working with reliable distributors and suppliers is definitely a top concern, no matter if you sell a food product or run a restaurant or food truck.So you’ve got most of your costs calculated but have you also factored in those tiny costs for distribution?You make that tasty treat that everyone just can’t get enough of …or maybe you’ve got the experience and the vision to start your own restaurant. or at least passionate about making awesome eats or a tasty beverage.So you might see that word and think that you don’t have to market your product.Well, if you ever hope to be one of the food businesses that survives, you’ll have to.