How to start a food business Selling food from home and delivering
It is Damian for marketing and food a lot. Hope you guys are having a great day. So I had a great question for one of my subscribers and it was actually in regards to starting a food style business from home and then having a delivery service, bring it to your customers. Can I do that and how can I do that if I can? That's what I'm a tougher right now.
All right guys. So as I mentioned in the introduction, uh, there is a subscriber and I'm checking out his question here. So he wanted to know about opening a food business and delivering it to customers from his home. Um, so there's quite a few questions actually involved with the answer. And I know that may sound a little odd, but I'll explain. So number one, the first question is what type of cottage food laws do you have within the state that you are in? A cottage food laws will dictate the type of food that you can make from home. And most of the time, about 99% of the time, um, you can't make food that is time or temperature sensitive. A potentially hazardous is what they call it. And what it means by hazardous is products. Like if you're making meat, chicken seafood that has to be cooked and then prepare it prepared and then eaten immediately.
normally be prepared in a cottage food setting. Now, if you were in a commercial kitchen, that's totally different. If you're in a restaurant, of course, that's even a totally different case, but they tried to regulate that because most food home base food businesses don't have the equipment, nor do they have the understanding. The operators don't normally have the type of understanding to operate a restaurant-style food business. Most of those foods have to be kept at a certain temperature or once they're made, they have to be in the middle immediately. So preparing them in a home kitchen is something that's normally not allowed. Now would that be, and said the state of California is the only one that I know of yet that has instituted a restaurant styled a law that actually allows you to prepare food like a restaurant at home. But the biggest catch to that is there's a lot of counties and cities that have not created ordinances just yet that allow that to happen.
So the state has the, has the, uh, the law, but each county and city can dictate upon what they would allow and what they don't allow. So California is the only one that has that just yet. But it's a good direction. It's a good move in the right direction to allow people to bring me to prepare foods such as hamburgers or steaks or you know, that type of restaurant style food at home. Um, so the question is, can you do that? It's going to be dependent upon your state. If they do allow it, then yes, you could do that. The most cottage food transaction, so keep this in mind and when I say by transaction is most cottage food products, when you're making them right now, let's say baked goods, cookies or bread or something like that, or Granola's, those types of foods have to be given directly to the customer.
So there can't be someone in between the transaction between the producer and the one that consumer that's actually purchasing it. So utilizing an app like a grub or something like that, uh, may not be allowed technically because you have to be the food producer who delivers it to the end user. Um, so you would have to do the delivery. So if your state does allow it, that would be great. Um, not too many. Like I said before, I've done quite a bit of research and know quite a bit about cottage food law. Uh, most states don't allow that type of business to be run from home. Uh, but if it does, you would actually have to be the end person delivering it. You'd have to be the one that brings that product to the customer. Um, also it would be quite limited as far as the type of foods that you can make.
Um, seafood is one that's very, very restrictive or anything related to seafood because of the potential of bacteria or the potential mishandling of it. Now to keep this in mind is that when you go to create a food business from home, um, many, many states. And of course it's funny because I can sit here and talk about every single state if I could, but that's like a five-hour video and you probably don't want to listen to that. So every state, uh, will dictate to what extent the type of food that you can make. Okay. And normally, again, you want to just, they kind of prevented it because most of them require also some type of class or some type of program that you have to go through to get a certain license or a permit. And it's a food handler's type of a class where they'll teach you about what is necessary to know when you're handling certain ingredients.
Uh, because most people who start food businesses from home traditionally are like baked goods and cookies and those types of things which are sold at flea markets or farmer's markets, festivals and those types of places, those different venues. Um, but now there's nothing to say that you can't, uh, go to a commercial kitchen and operated a business where you're going to be up and running like Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and you can operate and cook food from there. And to my knowledge, when you're operating from a commercial kitchen, uh, you have the ability or the capacity to deliver that type of food product. Now that's something you could think about doing. Some of the costs though may end up offsetting your profit margin because what's going to happen is the cost to rent those commercial kitchens can be quite expensive per hour. So if you're not selling enough food to actually make a profit compared to your expenses, it may be kind of wasting and wasting your time.
So keep that in mind. Do you want to double check? The biggest question is what state of human, and does your state allow you to do that from there? If they say yes, then you could create a whole menu and then have the ability to, uh, be up and running and selling food, but you'd have to deliver from yourself utilizing a third party delivery system. Um, traditionally wouldn't be allowed because of the fact that of those laws. So check with the USDA in your state if it's like, let's say the sit-in New York or the state of New Jersey, uh, Google the Usta, uh, office within your state and then contact them because traditionally it's either the local health department or it's going to be the USDA, the Department of Agriculture who will oversee those home-based bakeries or those home-based businesses and they're the ones that handle the inspections and such.
So check with them and let them know that you're wanting to do that type of business. And is that allowed under the cottage food laws? And then from there, take the next step and then create yourself a menu. Find out exactly what you can make and what you can't make 'em and then whatever requirements they need and then get yourself up and running. Um, I know in the state of California, again, like that, like I mentioned, they have it. Um, and I was hoping that a lot of other counties and cities adopted the org, created an ordinance that allowed the residents to do that because it's a great, a great experiment, I guess you want to say you have an opportunity within your home to see if you really want to open a restaurant or a cafe. Um, so doing it from home is a great way to do it without investing a lot of money or time into opening a retail location.
I have been there and done that and it's quite a job to do. So having the chance to experience it and see if it's something that you want to do and then become profitable, then take the next step is a great opportunity. So it's a really, really great concept. Hopefully, other states too can have the chance to, uh, adopt that. So I hope that answers your question. And I know there's probably a few of you that had the same similar questions about preparing food, actual food from home, not just baked goods and cookies and things. Um, so check with your state and find out exactly what they allow. And then that would be your first step thicker.