Have you discovered new culinary skills during lockdown? Or do you need help turning your hobby into a business?
Lockdown, for some, has been a time of experimenting and learning in the kitchen, social media has been awash with people sharing their lockdown baking creations – flour has been like gold dust and the demand for bake at home kits has been huge.
While the coronavirus lockdown has disrupted lives the length and breadth of the country, it has also provided opportunity for people stuck at home to get creative in the kitchen and rediscover their love of cooking. With fewer trips to the shops, budding chefs have had to become resourceful and imaginative with their meal planning.
So you’ve created a fantastic product, come up with an idea for a quirky brand, and you want to share your product with the rest of the world. What happens next?
Do you want to start your own food and drink business, but need guidance on how?
It may feel daunting to start your own business now, but as we come out of lockdown, the changing world in which we now live and work as a result of COVID-19 has created new opportunities. So, if you are passionate about food and keen to become a food or drink producer, it is a great time to examine the market and establish what your business can offer to your local and wider community.
A perfect example is, Y Gegin Maldod – a confectionary business that was supported by Food Centre Wales to set up quickly and efficiently during lockdown. The team of Food Technologists assisted the business through the process of a remote Environmental Health inspection, ensuring all the correct systems were in place to operate the food business safely from home. The Food Centre Wales team also helped with labelling to ensure accurate ingredients and allergen listing, shelf life information and legal product descriptions.
“Without the support from Food Centre Wales I can honestly say I would not be running the business now. I’d still be trying to work out HACCP plans and what I needed for my labels – I certainly wouldn’t have had the Environmental Health Officer’s approval to trade. Their support has been priceless to me, as I now have an income coming in at a time when I would otherwise have nothing. They even helped with sharing their contacts with other baking producers and ingredients suppliers, which has saved me money.” - Louise, Y Gegin Maldod
If you’re passionate about food and keen to start a food or drink business, there are plenty of options out there. Many food businesses require low investment to get started, and some can be run from home; from cheese and yogurt to healthy snack bars and ready meals – we can help you. Starting a business during the coronavirus outbreak is no different to starting a business at any other time, but at the moment we will support you virtually rather than in person.
Online Start-up Sessions
Although Food Centre Wales has been closed since lockdown, we have adapted our services to offer support online and remotely to businesses. The monthly online sessions are designed to help you turn your passion into a business. The sessions highlight all the help and support on offer to get your food or drink business off the ground. Don’t worry about all those technical questions or concerns you have, Food Technologists can guide you every step of the way on all aspects of food production.
“We’re proud to be able to continue to offer our start-up sessions online. Our food technologists are available to help you navigate your way through a range of food disciplines and regulations – we look forward to help you take your first tentative steps to set up a food or drink business.” - Arwyn Davies, Corporate Manager Growth and Enterprise, Ceredigion County Council
The Online Start-up Sessions are free for anyone to join. So take advantage of the support available to start your very own food business and register your interest here: http://www.foodcentrewales.org.uk/services/