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I make sweet potato pies and need to now how to get a distributor to take my product to supermarkets.
By sandra wilson-maza from NJ
There is a family here in SD that makes kuchen and kolaches that they sell in several grocery stores in the area. I saw them interviewed on the news one night and it sounded and looked like they had a special kitchen set up in their basement. the interview didn't go into licensing, etc. I am assuming when they first started the business they probably made the contacts themselves and delivered the product to the stores too. I don't know what procedure they have now.
I want to start a home business making sweet potato pies. My pies are amazing. I need to know how to have them packaged and sent to stores? Any help would be appreciated.
By sandra wilson-maza from NJ
In some states you can make the items at home. My cousin & her husband supply pies for some local restaurants. They have a commercial kitchen in their home. I don't think you'd have much luck with grocery stores. Most of the restaurants in my state don't make their own pies (with a few exceptions). They are supplied by people like my cousin. I was surprised at the number of people that thought these places make their own pies.
As far as packaging goes different restaurants want them packaged differently. Most of the pies my cousin just puts in a pie stacker to keep them safe since most of them are going to be sliced & sold by the slice. The restaurants have their own packaging they use for the ones they sell whole.
I am interested in marketing my carrot, butternut, sweet potato, and custard bean pies. How can I find information?
I would start at your local small business development center as they have one stop shopping to everything you need to start a business...they can get you contacts with the health department, and all the other tools you need to be successful. Some of the services are free (tax money pays). Use the locator to find one near you!
PS. You made me hungry!! PIES!! YUM!! Wishing you all the best!!!
You can use social media ( Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). It is free and attracts a wide audience. Go to as many trade shows as you can. Also get advice from your local Small Business Association. It is made up of mostly retired people who did have successful small businesses and want to help people starting out.
You do not say if you already have a "going" business and just want to expand but before you can really sell food in any state you must be sure that you have the legal right to sell in your state.
There are a lot of rules and regulations regarding the production and sale of any food product so be sure you are in compliance before you market your product.
I am not a fan of the BBB because they seem to be "big" business oriented and cannot seem to come down to the level of a small home business. Maybe this is just in Florida so you might still try to get information through your BBB.
Here is a link about rules and regulations but there is a link at the bottom of the page to request help from a counselor. This is probably the most important step you will take in marketing your food as everything else is unimportant if you do not qualify in your state.