Start & Run a Home-BasedFood BusinessMimi Shotland FixSelf-Counsel Press(a division of )International Self-Counsel Press Ltd.USA Canada

Copyright 2009 by International Self-Counsel Press Ltd.All rights reserved.No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form by any means — graphic,electronic, or mechanical — without permission in writing from the publisher, except by a reviewerwho may quote brief passages in a review.Self-Counsel Press acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through theCanada Book Fund (CBF) for our publishing activities.Printed in Canada.First edition: 2009; Reprinted: 2011, 2012Second edition: 2013Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in PublicationShotland Fix, Mimi, authorStart & run a home-based food business / Mimi Shotland Fix. — Second edition.(Start & run)ISBN 978-1-77040-174-71. Food industry and trade--Management. 2. Home-based businesses--Management. 3. New business enterprises--Management. 4. Small business--Management. I. Title. II. Title: Start and run ahome-based food business. III. Title: Home-based food business.HD62.38.S56 sel Press(a division of )International Self-Counsel Press Ltd.Bellingham, WAUSANorth Vancouver, BCCanada

ContentsNoticeAcknowledgmentsIntroduction1 Location and Space1. Start Your Business in Your Kitchen1.1 Storage and work space in your home2. Finding a Kitchen Outside Your Homexiiixvxvii33342.1 Kitchen incubators and shared kitchens52.2 Places that accommodate large gatherings52.3 Renting a commercial space53. Get the Rental Agreement in Writing62 Finding Your Product Niche111. Foods Made without Heat112. Stovetop, Hot Plate, and Microwave Foods123. Baked Foods124. Specialized Niches124.1 Convenience foods and meal parts134.2 Ethnic foods134.3 Health-oriented, allergy specific, and other special diets13iii

4.4 The seasons134.5 Fashionable foods144.6 Gift packages145. The “New” Catering146. Things to Consider before You Decide on a Product Niche166.1 Foods that are labor intensive166.2 Consider the shelf life166.3 Copyright issues on character cake pans166.4 Limit your products in the beginning177. Create a Signature Product7.1 Develop a few specialties8. Researching the Market3 Preparing a Business Plan171718211. Executive Summary222. Statement of Purpose223. History and Background224. Description of the Business and Products225. Company Values226. Operations and Employees237. Market Research238. Promotional Strategies239. Financing and Start-up Expenses2310. Projections and Forecasts2411. Personal Business Plan2412. Business Planning Help244 Making Your Business Legal291. Your Business Structure291.1 Sole proprietorship301.2 Partnership302. Choose a Business Name2.1 Register your business name31313. Employer Identification Number or Business Number314. Business License and Seller’s Permit32iv Start & run a home-based food business

5. Food Production License325.1 Food production license and legal issues326. Insurance337. Zoning Laws345 Financial Management371. Start-up Capital371.1 Minimalist approach371.2 Moderate approach381.3 Flush-with-capital approach392. Bookkeeping: Keep Track of Your Business402.1 Business expenses and deductions402.2 Business income432.3 Separating business finances from personal finances463. Hiring a Professional to Help with the Bookkeeping464. Paying Yourself474.1 Retirement savings475. Setting up Your Home Office476 Purchasing Cooking Equipment, Utensils, and Supplies511. Cooking Equipment511.1 Worktable and counter space521.2 Refrigerator521.3 Freezers521.4 Ovens531.5 Stovetop cooking or frying equipment531.6 Sinks531.7 Cooling rack541.8 Proof box541.9 Microwave541.10 Mixers541.11 Food processor541.12 Bread machine542. Cooking Utensils and Other Kitchen Necessities552.1 Saucepans and stockpots55Contentsv

2.2 Baking sheets, trays, and pans552.3 Rolling pins552.4 Measuring utensils562.5 Timers562.6 Miscellaneous small hand tools562.7 Aprons and towels562.8 Pan holders and pot holders562.9 Ingredient scale572.10 Certified scale572.11 Ingredient bins and tubs572.12 Shelving and racks572.13 Cleaning tools and supplies573. Purchasing Supplies573.1 Food supplies583.2 Holiday supplies583.3 Packaging supplies597 How to Name, Package, and Label Your Products631. Product Names632. Packaging632.1 The basics of packaging642.2 Trays and platters652.3 Gift packaging, bags, and baskets652.4 Outer packaging and transporting652.5 Shipping652.6 Eco-friendly663. Labeling Your Products663.1 Ingredient list673.2 Nutrition facts label683.3 Health claims683.4 Universal Product Code (UPC)698 Pricing Products731. Calculating the Costs732. Adjusting for Change in Cost of Goods76vi Start & run a home-based food business

3. Wholesale, Retail, and Courtesy Discount Prices764. Wedding Cakes and Other Exceptions to the Rule774.1 Contracts for wedding cakes and other special orders789 Where to Find Your Customers831. Wholesale: Finding Businesses that Will Sell Your Products831.1 Restaurants, diners, delis, and coffee shops851.2 Stores and markets851.3 Caterers and party planners861.4 Online merchants and catalogs861.5 Florists, gift shops, and specialty boutiques862. Retail: Finding Your Customers862.1 Street fairs and markets862.2 Mobile carts892.3 Office delivery route892.4 Wedding cakes and other specialty products922.5 Residential neighborhood sales922.6 Kitchen sales932.7 Mail order932.8 Holiday sales932.9 Celebrating year-round952.10 The custom gift business9510 Promoting Your Products1011. Create a Logo1012. Advertising1013. Marketing1024. Publicity1024.1 Press releases1025. Public Relations1035.1 Brochures1035.2 Flyers1035.3 Business cards1035.4 Websites1065.5 Portfolio106Contentsvii

5.6 Coupons1065.7 Write your own ads1065.8 Point-of-purchase promotional materials1065.9 Promotional products1075.10 Newsletters10711 Using and Measuring Ingredients1111. Availability and Substitutions1112. Use Natural Ingredients to Extend Shelf Life1123. Use Fresh Ingredients1124. Find a Multifunctional Recipe1125. Increasing the Ingredients1136. Formatting Recipes1137. Tweaking a Recipe1148. Testing Product Shelf Life1148.1 Freezing your products or ingredients1159. Measuring Ingredients11510. Utilizing the Leftovers and Excess Products11611. Ingredient Equivalencies11712 Recipe Advice and Tips1251. Ongoing Problem Recipes or Products1251.1 Occasionally good recipes go bad1262. General Tips for Recipes1263. Muffins and Quick Breads1284. Cookies1295. Bars and Brownies1306. Coffee, Bundt, and Pound Cakes1317. Other Cakes1318. Cake Frostings1329. Pies, Pastries, and Sweet Crusts13310. Breads, Buns, and Breakfast Pastries13311. Fruit Sweetened, No-Sugar Added Products134viii Start & run a home-based food business

13 Production and Business Tips1391. Production Tips1391.1 Seasonal production1391.2 Scheduling production1401.3 Assembly line method1401.4 Being organized1412. Food Safety Tips1413. Kitchen Safety Tips1424. Business Tips1424.1 Look professional1434.2 Your food should look professional too1434.3 Organize your home office1434.4 Be timely1434.5 Be consistent1434.6 Be a thinker1444.7 Problem solve1444.8 Know your competition1444.9 Donations1454.10 Don’t give away recipes1455. Customer Service Tips1455.1 Put on a happy face1455.2 Keep in contact1465.3 Dealing with pushy people1465.4 Observing your customers1465.5 Hire good employees1466. Taking Care of Yourself1476.1 Prioritize to reduce stress1476.2 Manage your time1476.3 Avoid isolation1486.4 Occupational hazards14814 Expanding Your Business1511. Keeping Your Business at Home1511.1 Increase production capability152Contentsix

1.2 Upgrade equipment1521.3 Renovation1521.4 Increase your outlets1521.5 Extend your product varieties1521.6 Profit from emerging trends1521.7 Continue to advertise1522. Opening a Retail Shop1533. Wholesale Space1544. Co-Packers1555. Making Decisions155Recipes1Basic Buttermilk Muffin Batter12Pumpkin Loaf93Apple Crumb Cake194Sour Cream Coffee Cake275Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies356Bakery Sugar Cookies497Gingerbread Cookies618Cappuccino Blondies719Chocolate Overdose Brownies8110Chocolate Cake9911Red Velvet Cake10912Poppy Seed Cake12313Harvest Cake Muffins13714Grand Marnier Fruitcake149Table1Ingredient Equivalencies117Samples1Sublet Agreement2Simplified Business Planx Start & run a home-based food business826

3Repayment Contract384Investor Coupon395Monthly Expense Ledger426Monthly Income Record457Product Label678Ingredient Label689Ingredient Cost Caculator7410Recipe Cost Calculator7511Wedding Cake Contract7912Retail Market Venue Supply Checklist9013Office Delivery Route Flyer9114Neighborhood Flyer9415Holiday Flyer9616Holiday Letter9717Press Release10418Retail Flyer10519Recipe Format115Contentsxi

Notice to ReadersLaws are constantly changing. Every effort is made to keep this publication ascurrent as possible. However, the author, the publisher, and the vendor of thisbook make no representations or warranties regarding the outcome or the useto which the information in this book is put and are not assuming any liabilityfor any claims, losses, or damages arising out of the use of this book. The readershould not rely on the author or publisher of this book for any professionaladvice. Please be sure that you have the most recent edition.xiii

AcknowledgmentsI was happy being a faux pastry chef and never intended to be a writer, butsometimes things don’t work out the way we plan. Thank you Professor Zenceyfor the encouragement to make writing a second career after the first one tookan unexpected turn. The next book really will be the one we worked on.Thanks to my publisher for making this transition possible. Editors Eileenand Tanya reshaped the manuscript so that you, my reader, would have a betterunderstanding of running a home-based food business.To my husband Dave, who washed all the dishes, spent hours alone, andnever (hah!) complained. For my daughter Gemmae, who as a two-year old fellinto a bucket of blackstrap molasses and taught me the value of safety rules. Toson-in-law Eric, my always cheerful webmaster, who gladly accepted oatmealcookies as payment. To David Jr. for the dessert table photos. Thank you to all ofmy family and friends for their sacrifice in eating countless test batches of bakedgoods. Finally, to my readers: I hope this book takes you one step closer to thatfirst (or second!) career you always planned.xv

IntroductionThroughout this book there are references to a CD, or to forms youwill find on the CD. In this edition, we have removed the CD fromthe book and replaced it with a downloadable kit which will work onMicrosoft, Apple, and Linux desktop computers. A link to downloadthat kit can be found on page 156 at the end of the book.Having a home-based food business is perfectif you’re a stay-at-home parent, unemployed,or retired. It’s also great for people who workoutside the home and are looking for a secondjob to make extra money. It’s especially helpfulfor people who are not satisfied in theirpresent job or career, because it can be a wayto ease into the food business without leavingthe security of a job. If you do have a full-timejob and depend on that income, don’t quit yet.Give this a try and see how you like it.For many people, the idea of owning a foodbusiness is a fantasy that seems unattainable.But with a few simple steps and very littleexpense, anyone can start a home-based foodbusiness and make money. The importantthing is to find a product that people want(maybe you make your family’s secret salsarecipe or give away jams that taste better thanthose you can find at the market). Once you’vefound the product people want, simply makeit, wrap it, and deliver it.If you have thought about a home-basedfood business and find it appealing but arenot skilled in the kitchen, an option is to firstlearn the craft. Work in a food productionenvironment (e.g., bakery, catering business,or restaurant) and you’ll pick up a few skillswhile seeing a business from the other side ofthe counter.Take courses offered through adult andcontinuing education programs or look forcooking schools that have an affordablexvii

certificate curriculum. Stores that sell cakeand bakery supplies, especially decoratingsupplies, might offer classes. You can alsoapprentice or volunteer with a local bakery orchurch group.The most important thing to do is practiceat home. Spend time reading cookbooks andrecipes. Read cookbooks the way you wouldread a novel — cover to cover. Ask questions ofpeople you know who do cook and bake. Thesesuggestions will give you a better footing whenyou start your own business.If you can navigate around the kitchen,the steps outlined in this book will move youahead. If your real dream is to have a largefood business, the steps in this book can getyou started. In the Resources file includedon the CD, there are links to inspiring storiesabout people who began in their homes andgrew their ventures into substantial, full-timebusinesses. That’s always a possibility for you, too.I wish there had been a book like this whenI began. After graduating college I began acareer in social services; but a few years laterI was unemployed, a soon-to-be single parent,and worried about the future. How could Imake enough money to pay the rent and childcare? The bleak prospect of returning to alow-paying job was depressing so I consoledmyself by baking. I made huge golden loavesof honey whole wheat bread and saucersized triple chocolate chip cookies. I loved tobake but had no previous business or foodindustry experience. I thought about bakingand selling from my kitchen, so I looked forhelp. However, I found no guides or how-tobooks other than a couple of catering manualsthat did not address my questions.The catering books, while interesting,were not applicable to setting up a homebased baking business. These books focusedon quantity cooking in commercially equippedkitchens for off-premises service. They toldme how to create menus, transport hot foods,set up bar service, and rent linens. My needswere different. I wanted to learn how toresize recipes and set up my kitchen spacefor efficient quantity production. I neededhelp in pricing, packaging, and labeling mybaked items. I also wanted to know how tofind customers. I was totally unprepared,but I moved ahead. I stumbled along askingquestions, making mistakes, and learning as Imoved forward.For approximately two years I continuedin my kitchen until I heard about a smallneighborhood pizza shop that had closed. Itsproduction area was the same size as my homekitchen! I rented the space but had no ideahow to design a commercial production areaor a retail store.There are often some limitations to usingyour personal budget. Professional help wascost-prohibitive for me so I continued along onmy own, often unsure about my decisions. Iconverted a shop into a bakery and continuedto ask questions. While holding on to my basicapproach to home baking, I learned techniquesthat helped speed up my production and createmore professional products. Eventually myhumble beginnings resulted in an all-scratchbakery and café, a free-standing building withnumerous employees. I had built a successfulretail and wholesale business.I’ve worked 25 years in the food industry.After owning and operating a bakery businessfor 15 years, I worked in other commercialkitchens as a baker and (faux) pastry chef. Ialso worked in the corporate food world ofresearch and development, both as a baker/chef developing new products and creatingprototypes for a national snack food company,xviii Start & run a home-based food business

and as a home economist, developing andtesting a new generation of ovens to competein the rapid cook arena. However, after aparticularly strenuous pastry chef position,I was unable to continue the heavy physicaldemands of commercial baking. I returned toschool but also refocused my love of baking bycreating new recipes for smaller-scale bakingin my home kitchen.Early in my career, as I learned theprofessional approach to baking for efficientquantity production, I was able to successfullyadapt many home techniques to the commercialproduction process. Now, after returning tomy home kitchen, I’ve discovered that manycommercial techniques can also be adapted forhome use. In this book I have many shortcutsto share, because I’ve combined commercialand home-baking processes to give you thebest of both baking worlds.I’ve watched as the food industry hasgrown and changed into a global marketplace.I’ve seen that there’s always a market forlocal homemade goods. You only have to lookat the marketing techniques used by largecorporations. Their labels give the impressionof fresh-from-the-farm homemade goodness.Their labels literally read: homemade, fresh fromthe oven, and just like grandma’s. Spend sometime in the grocery store, convenience mart,or anywhere food is displayed (don’t forgetvending machines). Take a stroll throughthe green markets and look at what peopleare buying and eating. Look around at yourlocal hometown eateries, neighborhood shops,farmers’ markets, and countryside stands. Whatdo you see? Homemade goodness rules!food business. This book is written for all levelsof bakers and people with a wide variety ofbusiness goals. Read through the whole book,even the parts that do not seem to apply toyour situation, because there are valuable tipsin each area and suggestions that may helpyou improve your skill set. If you are alreadyskilled at one of the steps, then good for you!If you already have a great recipe (or ten!),you’re way ahead, but there are other stepsinvolved. For those of you currently in businesswho want answers to specific questions, orsimply want to grow your business, this bookwill help you too. Please remember that you’renot alone. My website ( to help support your efforts. Visit methere, ask questions, and learn about otherowners of home-based food businesses.You can experiment and go slow, or chargeforward. By starting in your kitchen with nopressure of expensive overhead, you have theability to go as fast or as slow as you wouldlike. If you want to have a food business butcannot do it from your own kitchen, this bookwill give you alternative ideas.This book includes everything you mustknow about starting and staying in business.With detailed, step-by-step advice, thispractical guide supplies you with all of the keyingredients to transform your dream intoreality. Food products will always be in demandso there will always be a business waiting foryou.Good luck and enjoy — the best to all ofyou!— MimiThroughout the book I will provide youwith many suggestions for your home-basedIntroductionxix

Basic Buttermilk Muffin BatterPrepare the additions and set aside.Preheat oven to 375 F and line the muffin pan withpaper cups or use pan spray.In a medium bowl, beat together the egg, oil, sugar,buttermilk, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, stir togetherthe flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.Pour the dry ingredients on top of the wet and stirgently until mixed. Some small lumps are okay. Then stirin the prepared fruit or other additions. This should be athick batter.Divide batter into 12 medium or 6 large muffins,filling the pans almost to the top.Bake for 20 to 30 minutes depending on size. Turndown the oven heat if the tops are getting too brown.They will be done when a finger pressed gently on topleaves no imprint.Cool thoroughly before wrapping and storing. Thesekeep for two days; can be frozen for up to six months.Yield: Makes 6 large or12 medium muffins1-2 cups total additions(dried or seasonal fruit,chopped; nuts or coconut)1 large egg1/3 cup oil1/2 teaspoon baking soda1/3 cup granulated sugar1 cup buttermilk(or 7/8 cup milk with2 tablespoons vinegar orlemon juice)2 teaspoons vanilla2-1/2 cups all-purposeunbleached flour2 teaspoons baking powder1/2 teaspoon saltFor variations of this recipe see the file on the CD:Muffins and Quick Breads1

Chapter 1Location and SpaceThe first step in starting a home-based foodbusiness is deciding whether your kitchen isup to the task. You may already be aware thatyou need to find a bigger kitchen to do yourwork. This chapter will help you decide whatwill work best for you and how to utilize thespace you have.1. Start Your Business inYour KitchenMost home kitchens have the basics — hot andcold running water, a decent floor with solidwalls — which can be used for home-based foodproduction. Even a tiny apartment-sized kitchencan work well enough to get you started. (Seesection 1.1 for how to work in a small space.)If you don’t have a good working stove orrefrigerator, it’s still possible to start a businesswith a product that needs no appliances.Chapter 2 has suggestions to get you started.I strongly suggest that if you have nofood service background but are interestedin starting this enterprise, start by using yourexisting kitchen. Don’t remodel until you aresure that starting a home-based food businessis what you want to do.It’s wonderful to have the ability to earnincome just by using your kitchen. Just makesure that you, or anyone else using the kitchen,understand that business foods must be handleddifferently than personal foods. For example,dipping a finger into the chocolate filling maybe tempting, but spreading germs and bacteriacan adversely affect your customers. One sickcustomer can make you a target for the healthdepartment and put you out of business.1.2 Storage and work space inyour homeIf you have a lot of storage space in your home,your biggest problem may be organization.Designate and label certain areas or shelvesas “Business.” Everything should be dated andlabeled with contents.Let anyone using the kitchen know yourrules — this includes guests who might wanderin while you’re not around and help themselvesto the rolls and salad you’ve just prepared forthe next day’s delivery.3

If you don’t have enough storage, lookaround your home for creative ways to turnunused space into business space. Your healthinspector visits many other home-based foodbusinesses, and might have suggestions forunusual storage ideas he or she has observed.Nonfood items such as packaging materialscan be stored anywhere. Perhaps the diningroom can hold a cabinet or shelves; use thetop shelf in a linen closet; or keep a few thingson a shelf under your table. Food that’s beenopened needs to stay in the kitchen, pantry,or dining room, but unopened bags and boxesof ingredients can be left in their originalcontainers and stored elsewhere. Be carefulthat you don’t forget what you have and buytoo much; an inventory list can be helpful butyou must remember to keep it updated or itwon’t be of any help.It is also important that you do notstore food near moisture or in unsanitarysurroundings, even if the packages are sealed.I walked into a friend’s bathroom and saw fivebags of sugar in her bathtub. She said there’dnever been a problem but the potential isthere. Note that a health inspector would notapprove of this situation, so it’s not a good ideato store food products in the bathroom.Never store food directly on the floor; it’sunsanitary and a health code violation in everylocality I’m aware of. Check with your healthinspector to see how many inches of clearanceabove the floor is needed and make or buysmall pallets on which to stack your goods.Then you can easily clean under the palletswith a broom or vacuum without having tomove everything. Garden centers and discountstores have plant trolleys that can be used aspallets. They roll, can hold a lot of weight, andwork well for small spaces.4 Start & run a home-based food businessPreferably, keep all your small baking equipment (e.g., measuring cups, spoons, spatulas)in a central basket or tub. Do the same withthe small cans, jars, and boxes of ingredientssuch as salt, baking powder, baking soda, andextracts. When you’re ready to work, all youdo is take out the tub or basket of tools and thecontainer for equipment.Having lots of work and storage space isideal but if you have only a small place, youmust be creative. Think about the kinds of foodsyou can produce that take up less productionspace. If counter and table space is tight,get a folding table or two. If the refrigeratoris small, stay away from recipes requiringrefrigeration of ingredients, or substitute shelfstable ingredients. Instead of whole milk, usethe less expensive powdered milk; buttermilkalso comes in powdered form; or use water,coffee, juices, or teas. Limit your product lineto items that use the same basic ingredients tosave space. See Chapter 11, section 4., for moreinformation about multifunctional recipes.2. Finding a Kitchen OutsideYour HomeYou can still have a home-based food businesseven if you must use another location forproduction. Your home can be used as thebusiness base, from where you conduct yourbusiness, keep your books, and correspondwith clients and suppliers. If you find the lawsregulating homemade food production in yourlocality prohibit you from pursuing work inyour own kitchen, there are some ways to dealwith your particular problems without havingthe expense of renovation or renting a retailstorefront. (For more information on laws andzoning, see Chapter 4.)

When you are looking for a work spaceoutside your home, you will need to considerwhat the place offers you. Each facility willbe set up differently; the place you decide onshould have the basic equipment and workspace sufficient for your needs.If you are going to leave any supplies at thesite, it’s advisable to have a locked storage areato prevent both theft and contamination. If youcannot safely store your items there, you willneed to transport these items each time yougo to the production site. Don’t rely on yourmemory. Make a master list of all your suppliesand check everything off before you go, andagain when you leave the site.The following sections discuss options forthe use of a kitchen outside your home.2.1 Kitchen incubators andshared kitchensSmall food businesses are a growing trend. Toaccommodate these entrepreneurial start-ups,a relatively new business model is developing.Centers known by various names — smallbusiness development centers, food innovationcenters, kitchen incubators, food ventures, orshared kitchens — are being created to helpsupport new (or young and growing) foodbusinesses. These places are licensed facilities andare equipped for commercial production. Most ofthese centers also offer business guidance.Each facility is different and has its ownrules and prerequisites. Some expect you tohave a business certificate before signing up;some offer a complete package of business andproduction help; and some let users sign up foronly the services they need. These facilities usedto be found only in large cities or were associatedwith universities or nonprofit organizations.But new ones continue to open, and many arenow private, for-profit businesses.In the Resources file on the CD you will finda list of such facilities in the US and in Canada.You can also do an Internet search for any newfacilities which continue to open.For entrepreneurs without the expertise ormoney to invest in a full-scale business, usingan incubator kitchen is a wonderful way tostart, especially since many of these centersoffer basic business and production help. It canbe just the support you need to be successful.If using an incubator kitchen interests you,be aware that it will involve fees. While this isless expensive than renting a storefront, youwill need some capital to go this route.If you are kitchen savvy (perhaps you’vealready worked in commercial food serviceor have a culinary degree), there might be afacility near you where you can rent just thespace, without paying for their other services.2.2 Places that accommodatelarge gatheringsAnother possibility is to use the kitchen facilitiesin a town hall, community center, house ofworship, or other places which often have largeproduction areas to accommodate gatherings.These places might welcome additionalrevenue. If these kitchens are not alreadycertified, it might be easily done. A formalwritten agreement between you and the facilityis recommended. This is further explained insection 3.2.3 Renting a commercial spaceYou can sometimes work out an agreementwith a business owner who already operatesin a licensed kitchen. There are restaurants,catering companies, delis, coffee shops, bakeries,markets, and natural foods stores that are closedduring certain hours — they might welcome theextra income from renting their space to youLocation and space5

while their business is not operating. If you areproducing a small quantity of products and onlyneed a kitchen one day a week, many foodbusinesses may welcome you on days whenthey are closed.considerations should factor into your decisionon whether or not to use a particular kitchen.You could also look into renting spacefrom a small restaurant during its off hours.The clean-up crew for the restaurant mightbe finished before midnight and the first shiftmight not start lunch until ten in the morning.Perhaps there’s a small cake business in yourtown that only uses their kitchen three or fourdays a week and would love to make some extramoney by renting it out to you when they’re notusing it. These places might also barter spaceso that you can pay for the kitchen with yourfresh-made items or your time.3. Get the RentalAgreement in WritingIt’s important that the commercial spaceis licensed and has the equipment you needto process your products. The basics shouldbe in good working order and up to code— refrigeration, sinks, electric and plumbing,walls, and floors.How is the kitchen equipped? Does it fityour needs? Not all commercial kitchens arealike. Perhaps you need a stovetop with twoburners, but the facility only has a convectionoven. Make a list of your needs, suc

11. Personal Business Plan 24 12. Business Planning Help 24 4 Making Your Business Legal 29 1. Your Business Structure 29 1.1 Sole proprietorship 30 1.2 Partnership 30 2. Choose a Business Name 31 2.1 Register your business name 31 3. Employer Identification Number or Business Number 31 4. Business License and Seller's Permit 32