How to start a small business in the food industry
Owner of Soulful Kitchen and founder of Hope for the Hungry
SCORE North Central Indiana
When I first started my business, I had so many questions to be answered. I needed expert guidance, and I got it from SCORE, whose mission is to foster vibrant small-business communities through mentoring and education. The SCORE team took time to meet with me and help me fine-tune my business plan. Their input was invaluable.
Food Safety Training Video
One important requirement to operate a food service establishment is to be certified by ServSafe, a training program administered by the National Restaurant Association. I take great pleasure in educating and training people on the ServSafe procedures. This video, put out by public health officials in Irving, Texas, will give you proper instruction on how to safely handle food and kitchen equipment.
Registering my business name was the first step I took in building my business. It took me weeks to come up with a name that felt right because I wanted something that represented the kind of food I cook. Whenever you land on a name, this resource from the state of Indiana will allow you to register your business, as well as complete your tax registration and meet other state regulations.
Getting Your Employer Identification Number
A federal Employer Identification Number, also known as an EIN, is a unique nine-digit identifier that the Internal Revenue Service assigns to your business. This number allows you to legally conduct transactions and is needed to apply for licenses and permits.
Opening a Food Establishment
These guides from St. Joseph County, available in both English and Spanish, will explain the exact steps you need to take to obtain a local food permit and business license, depending on your type of operation. I found them really helpful when I launched my business; they covered all the details I needed to get started on the right foot.