Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Cookie Business From Home

I make cookies ALL of the time and my cookies are actually really really good! I even got a compliment from an ex baker that we were delicious. My cookies take about 10 min to bake and only 5 min to prepare...So "Brookie's Cookie's" may be my next from home business =) Here is a little info on how to start a cookie business from your home! Great idea for SAHM!!

Selling your cookies is a great way to combine your love of baking and a home-based career. However, starting a home-based cookie business requires more than a batch of snickerdoodles. It takes research and planning to ensure your business gets off to a good start. Further you need to comply with state laws regulating food sales, which includes obtaining a special permit.

Step 1

Decide what types of cookies you will be baking. You can specialize in one type of cookie, such as chocolate chip or shaped and decorated sugar cookies, or you can offer a variety. If you will be the sole baker, consider the amount of time you have vs. the amount of time each type of cookie takes to create. Drop cookies take less time than decorated ones. Also think about storage and delivery. Decorated cookies will require special storage and delivery to prevent them from being ruined. Create a price for each type of cookie by single purchase and in bulk. Your prices need to include the cost of ingredients, preparation time, business overhead and your desired profit margin.

Step 2

Contact the state's occupational licensing board that regulates food sales to learn about the laws regarding food businesses operated from home. Some states may require you to have a separate kitchen with its own oven, refrigerator and other equipment. Other states only require that your kitchen tools and food ingredients be separate from your personal ones. A health department official may need to inspect your home business kitchen.

Step 3

Make your business official. Apply for food permits as required by your state. Obtain a business license from your city or county government office. Contact your state's comptrollers or taxation office about a sales tax permit if sales tax is collected on food in your state. If your business name will be different from your given name, file a doing-business-as statement with your county. Purchase business insurance to cover your home business.

Step 4

Purchase the equipment and supplies need to create your cookies. These items include bowls, utensils, mixers, baking pans and measuring devises, which need to be kept separate from your personal cooking items. Buy packaging materials, such as plastic wrap or bags, and pastry boxes to store and deliver your cookies. If your state requires food labels, use computer label stickers to print your labels and stick to the cookie packaging.

Step 5

Sell your cookies. Photograph your cookies to use in your marketing materials, such as portfolios, brochures and ads. Send a news release to your local media outlets about your new business. Take samples of your cookies to local stores, cafes and caterers, and ask about offering your cookies as part of their service. If you can ship your cookies, consider selling them through a website.

Info from: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/start-cookie-business-home-4261.html


More info and tips on how to get started:

 

Rent vendor space at a local farmer's market. Farmers' markets routinely encourage local businesses, especially those who make their own products, to sell on market premises. Bake your best cookie recipes and place a platter with samples prominently in the middle of your table or booth. You can have a member of your staff walk around the market offering samples to other vendors and market attendees, market rules permitting. Farmers market organizers require vendors to fill out an application and provide proof of health department inspection to sell products to the public.

Contact local businesses that sell cookies and related items. Some businesses openly seek locally produced items for maximum freshness. Such businesses could include, but are not limited to, restaurants, catering and event-planning businesses, coffee shops and supermarkets. Visit the websites of such businesses and look for links that read "sell to us" or "vendor information." Make appointments to meet with store managers and buyers. Take a tray of samples, brochures and order forms to accommodate on-the-spot orders. Iowa State University says that some vendors may require you to have business liability insurance, which you can purchase from the company that insures your vehicle or home
Rent a food cart or food truck to sell home-baked cookies at various locations in your area. You must apply for a permit and submit to a health department inspection to operate legally in your jurisdiction. Upon receipt of your permit, use social networking forums to get the word out about your business. Announce daily cookie specials and where interested customers can find you throughout the day.

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