When starting a jams and jellies business your job duties will include selling jellies that have been made from fruit, sugar and pectin. The other product, termed as jam, is made from the meat of the fruit. The process of making the product is very cheap and easy. You will need to handle buying the fruits for the production. You may have produced home-made jams and jellies in the past for neighbors and friends. Even though they may have loved it, it is a good idea for you to first test the market, and to see the potential of this new business. Perhaps you can try to sell to local bakeries, restaurants and grocery stores as well as individuals.
Where will you work?
When starting a jams and jellies business the products you produce are purely for consumption, and so you will need to locate your business where there are lots of people to make sure you have a lot of sales. Your clients can be individuals as well as local bakeries, restaurants and grocery stores. You can also sell your jams and jellies in local farmers markets, flee markets and fairs. A jams and jellies business can often be started from home depending on zoning laws in your area. Rules and laws concerning home-based businesses will vary depending on location so be sure to inquire about this. If your area does allow you to start a jams and jellies business from your home, your will save much money on overhead costs which will save you money. If your area does not allow you to run a jams and jellies business from your home, there are other options. You can ask local bakeries or restaurants if you could use thier kitchen overnight (if they are not using it) in order to make your jams and jellies. This will mean that you will be up a good part of the night, but you can save a good sum in overhead costs. Another option are community centers. Just make sure that you follow the rules and zoning laws for your area.
When starting a jams and jellies business first, focus on the size of the business you want to start. This will determine the initial cost. The start up cost is really small if you want to first test the market, but you can expand later on. Basic costs when starting a jams and jellies business inludes ingredients for the jams and jellies, jars and food labels.
Starting a Jams and Jellies Business Tips:
- Follow local rules and keep it clean: All food businesses must have standards of cleaniness to prevent the food from making people sick. Always keep your work area clean, tie back hair, wash hands and wear gloves.
- Know the market demand, competition, etc: Conduct market research- See if there is enough demand for your product and research your competition. What does your product offer that your competition does not? Will people appreciate this difference?
- Jar Lables: There are some requirements of the information that needs to be posted on the jar labels including product name, manufacturers name and address, weight of the product and list of ingredients in order of weight. Check the FDA website for more information about this.
- Find out about local zoning laws. Zoning laws govern the area and can pose restrictions on how local businesses operate. Check your local zoning laws to ensure you are not breaking any rules. Zoning laws may not allow home based businesses in your area. If you run a jams and jellies business from your home it is also important that you do not form a disturbance to your neighbors. Neighbors may complain about you to the local zoning board if they feel your home business is bringing too much traffic to your street, being too noisy or causing other disturbances.
- Find out the requirements to legally operate your jams and jellies business Contact your local Board of Health or government offices/ secretary of state to discover what licenses or permits you need. Some states are stricter than others when dealing with home businesses. When handling food for the public you need to follow health codes to ensure it is safe to eat.
Advertising a Jams and Jellies Business
When advertising your Jams and Jellies business try out a variety of the following techniques to advertise your business and keep track of thier performance. Keep the methods that are working out the best for your business and dump the ones that are not :
- Word-of-Mouth– One sure way to get people talking about your jams and jellies business is by creating great tasting jams and jellies. Give people something to talk about.
- Jams and Jellies Business Cards– Create business cards and hand them whenever an opportunity appears.
- Local Events– Take advantage of local events to spread the word about your jams and jellies. Provide people with a free sample.
- Farmers markets– You can sell your jams and jellies at local farmers markets and flee markets.
- Door to door: This is effective as you will be promoting your market directly to the consumers of your products.
- Contact local stores and bakeries: Ask local stores and bakeries if they will be willing to sell some of your jams and jellies. You can also provide samples to the shoppers.
- Offer incentives: Discounts can create new customers through spreading of the word, as well as retaining the existing customers. This is a direct promotional style.
- Posters and placards: These may be applied once your business has expanded. Place posters at different locations in the area where you are operating.
- Newspaper Classifieds: This is also beneficial once your business has expanded.
- Website: You can decide to have a website to provide customers with general information about your jams and jellies. If you do have a website, you can include your website address on your jar label.
A trend in the food industry is organic foods. More and more people are becoming more conscious about what they are eating and are switching to organic. They are becoming aware about genetically modified foods and prefer more natural foods. They are even willing to pay more for organic food.
Not sure about starting a jam and jellies business? See a list of small business ideas