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mjljr13
12-19-2011, 07:21 PM
I just wanted to know if the other brethren think I'm on the right track for making a little cash this summer. I'm planning on vending BBQ at competitions I was planning on doing pulled pork sammiches, sammich plates with chips and a drink. A boat of cheese nachos and shaved ice will be on my menue. I can get a case for approximately 1.40 a lb so........ .60 x precooked weight (of 8lb butt) = 4.8 lbs / 4oz pork per sandwich = 19.2 sandwiches is what I figured it out to be.....4.50 for a 4-5oz sammich 6.50 sammich chips and can soda or water. 3.50 nachos. And 2$ for shaved ice....I will have spicy reg and mustard sauce available. And they always say cook on site but I dont see that possible I will most likley cook the butts in advance...just wondering am I on the right track here. Thanks brethren!

chad
12-19-2011, 08:16 PM
Check the venues. Often you won't be able to sell drinks-the venue reserves that for themselves. Also, usually at least 10% goes to the venue. Nachos and sandos and shaved ice??? Dude, I hope you have some help.
Good luck.

mjljr13
12-19-2011, 08:30 PM
Should I have some more? I figured that would have been quick and easier than a big menu....besides the shaved ice which that's all my partner.

chad
12-20-2011, 05:34 AM
Well, prime vending time is about 10 AM - 2 PM and that's when you are busiest with turn-ins.

Lake Dogs
12-20-2011, 01:37 PM
It's rare that I see competitors vend on turn-in day. Last time I saw this I decided to pay more attention to them. They did one portion right in that they had 2 people seemingly working the competition side and another 4 people working the vending side. I was surprised that they didnt seem to be selling as much as I'd have thought. Afterwards I did notice that in a small sanctioned competition they didnt make finals in any event nor were they top 10 in any... I'm thinking we may not see them back again.

Mind you, their experience and yours could be completely different. However, dont underestimate the man power and focus needed to make money vending. If you're taking that away from competition, you may be "averaging down", both on the vending and the competition side.

BigFatDaddys
12-20-2011, 03:43 PM
When we vend we vend only and if we compete we do just that and only that. We find it's hard to focus on having everything done and turn out right if you have a lunch line of hungry customers. We see some vendors in some places do both which amazes us. Some competitions rules prevent vendors from selling depending on the event, so be sure to check rules first.

Rub
12-26-2011, 11:27 AM
It's tough but can be done, I've done it several times.

".....4.50 for a 4-5oz sammich 6.50 sammich chips and can soda or water. 3.50 nachos."

If it were me it would be $5 per sandwich, $7 per combo. If it's cash sales you don't want to have to deal with a ton of quarters, and if it's "Pig Bucks" they don't deal in $.50 increments. We're trying to move a sandwich to $6 here. Been at $5 for 6+ years and the profit margin is falling out.

kurtsara
12-26-2011, 12:52 PM
It's tough but can be done, I've done it several times.

".....4.50 for a 4-5oz sammich 6.50 sammich chips and can soda or water. 3.50 nachos."

If it were me it would be $5 per sandwich, $7 per combo. If it's cash sales you don't want to have to deal with a ton of quarters, and if it's "Pig Bucks" they don't deal in $.50 increments. We're trying to move a sandwich to $6 here. Been at $5 for 6+ years and the profit margin is falling out.

What is a Pig Bucks?

Rub
12-26-2011, 12:57 PM
What is a Pig Bucks?

Common name around here for the fake currency used by organizers at bbq contests. The public buys pig bucks dollar for dollar, public uses them to buy from vendors. Vendors cash them in at the end of the day and around here typically receive $.80 on the dollar. The organizers way of making their 20% off your sales. No cash sales allowed.

Ford
12-27-2011, 08:53 AM
remember depending on where you are vending you may need to get health department permits. Used to be here in FL there was no need but I'm seeing it now at some contests. Just a matter of time till you need to add on that license fee for vending.

PorkQPine
12-27-2011, 09:08 AM
check when you will be paid, sometimes it takes weeks to get a check for your vending efforts. I have seen 50% payout and no drink sales allowed. It is usually a loser unless you have friends who will do the work while you compete. If you are paying for staff it is surely a loser. I have also see it where you are limited in what you can charge. 2oz cups of pulled pork is about the only winner.

kurtsara
12-27-2011, 11:49 AM
Common name around here for the fake currency used by organizers at bbq contests. The public buys pig bucks dollar for dollar, public uses them to buy from vendors. Vendors cash them in at the end of the day and around here typically receive $.80 on the dollar. The organizers way of making their 20% off your sales. No cash sales allowed.

Around here they just call them tickets, although most events do not use them, we have vended for two years and have never dealt with them yet.

We vend for fun so we pick and choose what we vend.

chad
12-27-2011, 07:35 PM
To add to the confusion: At some events you can vend ONLY if you compete. Often primary vendors just throw something in a box and don't care how they place.

It's always a balancing act.

Jacked UP BBQ
12-27-2011, 08:43 PM
We vend and compete at every event we go to. If you plan on making money, make sure you have staff that can produce while you do turn ins. I have events that will not allow you to vend if you do terrible in the comp. Winning sells food. Do them both it can be done. You need a staff to make big money vending there is no way to do it yourself. I usually got with 6-8 people depending on the event.

Maddog's
12-27-2011, 09:09 PM
Here's a request from a competitor who also vends on occasion.
If you have a small team, doing both can be a bitch! Unless I have plenty of help, I won't do both because I'm a compeititor first!
But my request is this. If you're a competitor who is vending, PLEASE take some pride in what you vend.
Nothing like serving up folks who have just thrown complete meals in the trash because that's where they belonged and believe me, they'll be happy to tell you where they bought 'em, too. The last such occurance found some of our freinds visiting an event where we were not vending. We recommended a team that was serving the full meal deal. We remarked how they were a successful competition team and we assumed they would get a good lunch. We could not have been more wrong. So, we fed our friends from our comp "leftovers" and they loved 'em.
Then you know what happens? The team that served the disgusting meal ends up Grand Champs.
Do I expect your vend to be as tasty and tender as your boxed entries? Well, hell no but could you please make it at least comparable or could we please at least not allow it to be crap?
I am very probably preaching to the choir here but spread the word, would ya? We attract a lot of folks who are happy to shell out they're hard earned sheckles because they've always hear that competition bbq is so much better than restaurant bbq. I for one (and I bet you do too) take pride in what I hand out or sell to anyone. The less than good bites go in the trash. I won't sell 'em or hand 'em out.
I think it's a tradition we should talk about at our events and we should insist upon! Maybe we can start with the Bretheran. In other words, if you sample or purchase from a Bretheran team you can count on it being competition quality! I like that approach. How about y'all?

(OK off my box of soap)

Bbq Bubba
12-28-2011, 06:59 AM
Ummmm, HUH?

Uncle T
12-31-2011, 01:12 PM
I would have to agree, if you vend and comp. at the same time, put the effort to win into both. I have never done vending and comp. together either, I have always gave out free samples after turn in (when it was allowed). Some event as stated wont let you vend if doing comp. I have had meals from top winners and yet their vending food was the pits.. I am not sure I could vend and do comp. together. I have a hard time wlking and chewing gum.. Yes aa one track mind here my wife tells me.. lol

Jacked UP BBQ
01-03-2012, 03:01 PM
I personally like my vending food better than comp food

rawtalent
01-11-2012, 07:19 AM
In SC you are supposed to get a TFE (Temporary Food Establishment) permit and won't be allowed to cook any food until you have been inspected by the health dept. Contact them to find out what you need. You can bring in precooked food but it has to come from a licensed commercial kitchen or commissary that you name on your permit application. Bringing it in cold and reheating is a no no.

I have competed and vended a few times and done ok in comp but always had a staff take care of vending while I concentrated on comp cooking. $5 a sammage is pretty standard but sometimes you can get $6.

smoke-n-my-i's
01-14-2012, 12:42 PM
from another cook team.... from words from buyers at a comp.

when you vend, they, the public, expect it to be what you are turning in for comps.....

I was truly disappointed the first time I went as a spectator to a competition and my wife and myself bought some food.... expecting top quality and got the bottom of the barrel. The meat was tasteless, nothing on it, just cooked.... my work boots were more tender than the brisket, and my wife said the pork was full of fat. And this was all bought from a top name competitor several years ago.... and the people were lined up getting food.

So, my advice is to make sure if you do vend, vend what you would turn in, and you should get great reviews from the public and the word will spread and you will be BUSY..... just my $0.02 worth.

Maddog's
01-14-2012, 05:51 PM
Right on, oh bro from NC.
To the new guy, you might want to consider vending an "ALTERNATIVE" to heavy BBQ. That is to say, try offering something else which isn't demanding to produce or serve, especially if others are vending the traditional BBQ heavy faire.
Twice last year while competing, we operated "Maddog's Dog House" where we offered all kinds of dogs and sausages with a zillion and one different topings including championship chili. Our big item was the $10 "Incinerator Ghost Dog". Hot link, big deli bun, pickled peppers, 5-alarm chili, onions and Oh, did I overlook the Bhut Jolokia Ghost Pepper Sauce just for good measure?!?
You should have seen the Firefighters lining up and challenging the Cops. It was "Who's man enough?" We were feeding them cold cottage cheese afterwards! It was hilarious!! Same event this year, that price is going up!
But the point is, that offered something aside from the standard BBQ items which most come there wanting but it also offered something for the little kids and we sell out when we do it. It doesn't kill us to do it and it's good cash on the side.

Wampus
01-15-2012, 04:09 PM
Interesting finding this thread here. Me and another Brethren are teaming up to compete together this summer and were JUST talking this morning about maybe trying our hands at vending at a couple of comps this year too. We're not sure exactly what menu items but are fully aware that we'll need some help working the counter and serving. Our significant others and other relatives are gonna be that help.

Not sure how big the menu should be. A giant menu just seems to mean more work and all, but may attract more customers. The turn ins come first, but we're trying to figure all that out....

Bottom line.....there was a team last year who came in 9th at a comp and made about 13 times more cash than the GC did because they also were vending. THAT is what I'm talking about!