UMaine Extension Offers Sessions to Turn Favorite Recipes Into Business Realities

Contacts: Beth Calder (207) 581-2791; Aimee Dolloff, (207) 581-3777

MACHIAS – Your friends and family rave about your homemade chowder, blueberry jam, fudge, or other special food product. They say you should sell it and make a fortune. Are they right? Where do you start?

To answer these questions and more, University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a workshop series at the University of Maine Machias. From Recipe to Market: Ca$hing in on Value-Added Opportunities will provide an overview of what is involved in taking a specialty food product to market.

Participants will learn about licensing, how to prepare and package their food product safely, to access potential profits, and discover some of the resources available to support them in business development.

Participants must have a specific food product or recipe in mind and are expected to attend all sessions. This program is for individuals currently operating a value-added business or those seriously considering one.

Applications must be returned to the Washington County Cooperative Extension office by Thursday, Oct. 15 to reserve a space.

This program is available free ofcharge thanks to the generous support of Maine Coast Heritage Trust.

Key Presenters:

Dr. Louis V. Bassano, Extension Educator & Professor, UMaine Extension

Dr. Beth Calder, ExtensionFood Science Specialist, Assistant Prof., Dept. of Food Science & Human Nutrition, University of Maine

Dr. James C. McConnon, Extension Business and Economics Specialist, Professor, School of Economics, UMaine

Workshop titles and times are as follows:

·     Thursday, Oct. 29, 6-8 p.m.

Are You an Entrepreneur and What is Involved?

Calder and Bassano will explore issues involved in being a food entrepreneur.

·     Thursday, Nov. 5, 6-9 p.m.

Developing Your Product and Process

Calder will review regulatory agencies, grading, packaging and labeling.

·     Thursday, Nov. 12, 6-9 p.m.

Business Realities

McConnon and Bassano will give an overview of market research, business structure, insurance, pricing, promotion and sales options.

·     Thursday, Nov. 19, 6-9 p.m.

Resource Panel

A panel discussion featuring an insurance agency, banker, attorney and food business entrepreneur will give advice and answer questions.

·     Thursday, Dec. 3

Individual Business Counseling

Participants can make an appointment with presenters to get input on their written business plan, ask questions and seek advice about next steps.

·     Pilot Plant Tours will be arranged and are optional.  Participants will meet Pilot PlantDirector Connie Young Johnson at the University of Maine Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition. They will see the equipment and resources available to assist with food product development research.