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HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 09:02 AM
I didn't want to hijack the Roadside Vending Thread, which is a very helpful, so I thought it best to start one specifically for Farmer's Markets which have different issues.

Looks like I am going to get a spot at the local Saturday morning farmer's market this summer so I am going trough the planning stages right now.

Here is my vision at this point.

I intend to be set up in an EZ-Up, and run like a miniature central Texas, german butcher shop heritage, operation like Cooper's in Llano or the Lockhart trio and sell smoked meat and sides by the pound. I want it to be more like a smoked meat booth than a traditional barbecue booth.

I want them to smell the smoke to help lure them them over to the booth, so I intend to have smoke coming out of a holding pit . I want to cut the meats in front of the customers, letting them tell me how much of each meat they want, wrap them in butcher paper and have them take it over to my wife to be weighed and purchased. (The eyes are bigger than the stomach in these Texas joints. The smell of smoked meat drives you crazy as you tell them how much you want and you always buy more than you can eat.)

Sides will be in containers and be sold by weight also. There will be picnic tables set up for them to sit and eat off the butcher paper. There will be a self-serve wrapping station for them to take home the extra food they have not eaten.

In Vermont, farmer's markets have a little less stringent permit requirements than normal vending or catering operation. I am now in the process of getting what permits I need.

More to follow like coming up with a good name for such an operation. But I wanted to get input from the Brethren, who have vended - especially in farmer's markets, on my thinking so far.

LoneStarBarbeque Co.
02-20-2009, 09:45 AM
Sounds like the perfect set up. What are you going to have out there to cook on?

Jacked UP BBQ
02-20-2009, 10:03 AM
I guess farmers markets out here are different. I would never be able to sell food and have them sit down and eat it. Our markets are people coming and basically grocery shopping. I am going to approach a local farmers market and see what they think about the idea of selling food there.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 10:32 AM
Sounds like the perfect set up. What are you going to have out there to cook on?

I am going to do the actual smoking off-site. At first with three WSMs and Two SnP Pros. Will add USDs as soon as I can to replace all of those and add a few more as needed. If things go really well, I would then get into a large cabinet smoker such as a Spicewine.

I intend to transport the smoked meat to the market in cambros and pull out meat as needed into the holding pit which is mostly for smoke and show - probably one of the SnP Pros at first. Cooper's smokes in the various pits they have in the yard, and then bring the smoked meat to the "selling pit" that you walk by to see the meat they cut for your order. This is a similar concept.

I guess farmers markets out here are different. I would never be able to sell food and have them sit down and eat it. Our markets are people coming and basically grocery shopping. I am going to approach a local farmers market and see what they think about the idea of selling food there.

Ar first, they will have to take the food over to the community seating area, but I hope to be able to put a few picnic tables out near me. Long term if sales are good enough, maybe for next summer, I am looking into getting two adjacent spaces with one of the EZ-Ups used for the eating area.

LoneStarBarbeque Co.
02-20-2009, 11:07 AM
Will the HD let you cook at home and sell it like that?

Bbq Bubba
02-20-2009, 11:18 AM
I guess farmers markets out here are different. I would never be able to sell food and have them sit down and eat it. Our markets are people coming and basically grocery shopping. I am going to approach a local farmers market and see what they think about the idea of selling food there.

Check it out man, our market last fall actually cleared a spot just so people had a place to sit, and it was their idea!

I am going to do the actual smoking off-site. At first with three WSMs and Two SnP Pros. Will add USDs as soon as I can to replace all of those and add a few more as needed. If things go really well, I would then get into a large cabinet smoker such as a Spicewine.

I intend to transport the smoked meat to the market in cambros and pull out meat as needed into the holding pit which is mostly for smoke and show - probably one of the SnP Pros at first. Cooper's smokes in the various pits they have in the yard, and then bring the smoked meat to the "selling pit" that you walk by to see the meat they cut for your order. This is a similar concept.

So your plan is to stay up ALL night the night before your market and cook and then sell food all day?

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 11:19 AM
Will the HD let you cook at home and sell it like that?

I will be using a compliant kitchen at the church near my house.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 11:27 AM
So your plan is to stay up ALL night the night before your market and cook and then sell food all day?

Well, sort of. With either the WSMs or the UDS, there isn't a lot of need to stay awake all night. But I will be up some to check things out.

The farmer's market closes at 1:30 PM, so i can catch a nap after that if need be. I am up smoking a lot on weekends for myself anyway. (Plus, at my age, it works in great with my getting up to go to the bathroom. :biggrin:)

Bbq Bubba
02-20-2009, 11:27 AM
I will be using a compliant kitchen at the church near my house.

Good answer! 8-)

Sounds like a good plan then!

Bigmista
02-20-2009, 11:37 AM
I have actually been toying with that idea myself because we are getting more and more bulk orders. Our Farmer's Markets have community eating areas also.

MrsMista
02-20-2009, 11:56 AM
So your plan is to stay up ALL night the night before your market and cook and then sell food all day?

You pretty much have to because your customers expect your food to be done when you open up. And since market usually about 4 hours you don't have time to smoke anything else. That only works for people who put there meat on the fire.

MrsMista
02-20-2009, 11:59 AM
I have actually been toying with that idea myself because we are getting more and more bulk orders. Our Farmer's Markets have community eating areas also.

The way you were explaining before I didn't get a clear picture. But his concept of having someone else weigh it after he puts it on paper is great. I think we should wait until we get the larger smoker though.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 12:10 PM
I have actually been toying with that idea myself because we are getting more and more bulk orders. Our Farmer's Markets have community eating areas also.

Seems like you are perfectly positioned to evolve into a similar style operation.

Dr_KY
02-20-2009, 12:44 PM
I love yall!

I gotta get myself in moton at our local market.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 12:59 PM
Here is a picture of the "selling/holding pit" at Cooper's in Llano. Notice the red plastic trays on which they place your meat directly -- no paper or anything, to take inside to weigh.

They have goat, thick pork chops, ribs, brisket, sausage, etc in there to choose from. The meats are cooked on the other pits in the yard. You can see part of one of them on the far left of the picture.

The selling/holding pit is to the side of the building. There is no front door as such. You stand in line and smell the smoke. When it is your turn, they open the pit door for you and the smell gets you in a feeding frenzy. You point and they cut. Then you go in the side door to weigh and pay and get your other stuff.

The concept I have for the farmer's market is adapted from this system.

http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w147/HeSmellsLikeSmoke/CoopersSellingPit.jpg

Bbq Bubba
02-20-2009, 01:04 PM
Problem i see with that is, at your market, people won't be able to stand by your pit and look at food.
The HD is gonna make you keep your pit seperate from where you vend and the Fire Inspector is gonna make you keep the pit barricaded from the public.

YMMV :cool:

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 01:11 PM
Problem i see with that is, at your market, people won't be able to stand by your pit and look at food.
The HD is gonna make you keep your pit seperate from where you vend and the Fire Inspector is gonna make you keep the pit barricaded from the public.

YMMV :cool:

I was assuming the pit would be behind me , but in sight of the customer and I would be behind a serving table. They would say brisket and I would pull it out and slice it in front of them and wrap it in butcher paper like they do at Kreuz's.

Good point to check out just what they will let me do.

MrsMista
02-20-2009, 01:11 PM
Problem i see with that is, at your market, people won't be able to stand by your pit and look at food.
The HD is gonna make you keep your pit seperate from where you vend and the Fire Inspector is gonna make you keep the pit barricaded from the public.

YMMV :cool:

I totally agree about seeing the food. Customers are constantly trying to look over each others shoulder when we pull a rack to cut or pull something from the smoker behind us.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 01:19 PM
Here is the serving counter at Kreuz's. One person is the cashier, and the others are cutting, weighing and wrapping meat.

http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w147/HeSmellsLikeSmoke/KreuzsServingCounter.jpg

Bigmista
02-20-2009, 02:39 PM
Here is one of our setups:

http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j67/bigmista/Farmers%20Market/P1030228.jpg

And at another market...

http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j67/bigmista/Farmers%20Market/P1030232.jpg

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-20-2009, 04:00 PM
[QUOTE=Bigmista;857582]Here is one of our setups:


And at another market...


Thanks for sharing those pictures Neil. Now that I am trying to plan a setup, i can see much more in them that I would have before.

AZScott
02-21-2009, 02:44 PM
Great discussion guys! I've got a couple of questions that would help me out incredibly.

How big of an area are you guys vending in? I've been putting together a plan and most often I'm seeing a 10' x 10' area as the dimension with upgrades.

Is the smoke an issue with other vendors? I'm trying to avoid this one if at all possible.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-21-2009, 04:45 PM
The space we have here is 10' x 10'.

Bigmista
02-21-2009, 05:21 PM
10X20 is the minimum here for food vendors. Different for famrers and artisans. Talk to your market manager for details. There is no way to do 10x10 unless you show up with your meat already cooked.

rbsnwngs
02-22-2009, 01:16 PM
we could never get away with this down here on LI
BOH would have a feild day
Good luck and i hope it all works out

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-22-2009, 01:19 PM
we could never get away with this down here on LI
BOH would have a feild day
Good luck and i hope it all works out

It isn't clear that I can do it here in Vermont either. Meeting with the health department next to see how far I can take the concept.

Bbq Bubba
02-22-2009, 02:16 PM
The space we have here is 10' x 10'.

10X20 is the minimum here for food vendors. Different for famrers and artisans. Talk to your market manager for details. There is no way to do 10x10 unless you show up with your meat already cooked.


I agree, food handling and serving has to be under your tent (10x10) so you'd have no room for a smoker.

Bbq Bubba
02-22-2009, 02:16 PM
we could never get away with this down here on LI
BOH would have a feild day
Good luck and i hope it all works out

Just curious Will, what are they not allowing there?

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-22-2009, 02:19 PM
I agree, food handling and serving has to be under your tent (10x10) so you'd have no room for a smoker.

As I talked about early in the thread. I might go for a second, adjacent, space of the same size. They charge $450 per space for the season.

Bbq Bubba
02-22-2009, 03:01 PM
As I talked about early in the thread. I might go for a second, adjacent, space of the same size. They charge $450 per space for the season.

What is the "season" up there? April to October?

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-22-2009, 03:05 PM
What is the "season" up there? April to October?


In 2009 the market begins on May 16th and runs through October 17th. The leaves don't normally come on the trees here till the first or second week in May.

Bbq Bubba
02-22-2009, 03:23 PM
In 2009 the market begins on May 16th and runs through October 17th. The leaves don't normally come on the trees here till the first or second week in May.

Roughly the same here but have found a couple places open in April. :biggrin:

Jacked UP BBQ
02-22-2009, 04:32 PM
Thanks to all you guys I just signed up for two farmers markets in the area. They say they average around 300 people per day. It is only once per week. I am going to make all the food and I have someone that is going to set up, sell, and breakdown on all of the days. I will give you an update when they start in June. Thanks for the leads

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-22-2009, 05:01 PM
Great! Keep us in the loop. We all learn from each other.

AZScott
02-22-2009, 05:25 PM
Thanks for the help. I'm going to try and set something up with the local farmers market this week. I'll make a post when it happens.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-22-2009, 05:55 PM
That's great too. Let us know what you find out. :biggrin:

barbefunkoramaque
02-22-2009, 06:19 PM
There isn't enough love to express how I feel about your project.

A few tips are:

Go Ahead and do your precooks and wrap those briskets and get you a good amount frozen up precooked and frozen. Never run out... keep some frozen on standby or at least thawed. More on this later.

Keep your pit heat at Rib or chicken level and warm those puppies up in the smoker...cool section. IF THERE IS TIME I used to have a series of TWO 4 inch deep flats with a custom rack that I would use alternatively.

When one brisket was being cut, the most heated through of the brisket was unwrapped (cut) drained into the pan and placed on the rack to let the bark set up again in the smoke.

When you need another brisket the one you did earlier is ready and you simply repeat the process. unwrap, drain, bark it up.

Now about freezing and stocking up. Always print out on your menu a family meal and plant those seeds to your customers (in print, my word of mouth) that you have entire briskets (or portions) pre packaged and for sale with sides with reheating instructions in case they need a night off for cooking or want to take some to a work function the next day.

whats not sold.... you keep.... its frozen and ready for the next time.

I used to have a safe amount cooked for event that day and a frozen back up for "take home sales."

I preferred frozen back ups because I was not comfortable with handing them a 35 degree brisket with my sticker on it that may sit in the car a few hours.

Pork butts too but pull the bone before vacuum packing.

Sides.... "You want Potato Salad? Heres a bag of Chips." LOL

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-22-2009, 07:05 PM
Thank you very much Donnie. I appreciate your post on many different levels and am all ears.

MrsMista
02-23-2009, 12:24 PM
Thanks to all you guys I just signed up for two farmers markets in the area. They say they average around 300 people per day. It is only once per week. I am going to make all the food and I have someone that is going to set up, sell, and breakdown on all of the days. I will give you an update when they start in June. Thanks for the leads

Farmer's Markets around the world are going to be known for the BBQ. Woo hoo.

C Rocke
02-23-2009, 01:51 PM
There isn't enough love to express how I feel about your project.

A few tips are:

Go Ahead and do your precooks and wrap those briskets and get you a good amount frozen up precooked and frozen. Never run out... keep some frozen on standby or at least thawed. More on this later.

Keep your pit heat at Rib or chicken level and warm those puppies up in the smoker...cool section. IF THERE IS TIME I used to have a series of TWO 4 inch deep flats with a custom rack that I would use alternatively.

When one brisket was being cut, the most heated through of the brisket was unwrapped (cut) drained into the pan and placed on the rack to let the bark set up again in the smoke.

When you need another brisket the one you did earlier is ready and you simply repeat the process. unwrap, drain, bark it up.

Now about freezing and stocking up. Always print out on your menu a family meal and plant those seeds to your customers (in print, my word of mouth) that you have entire briskets (or portions) pre packaged and for sale with sides with reheating instructions in case they need a night off for cooking or want to take some to a work function the next day.

whats not sold.... you keep.... its frozen and ready for the next time.

I used to have a safe amount cooked for event that day and a frozen back up for "take home sales."

I preferred frozen back ups because I was not comfortable with handing them a 35 degree brisket with my sticker on it that may sit in the car a few hours.

Pork butts too but pull the bone before vacuum packing.

Sides.... "You want Potato Salad? Heres a bag of Chips." LOL


Just make sure that you are cooking/freezing/storing in line with your local health codes - LA and OC allow NO product cooked, precooked or frozen at a residential location and then sold or even given away. Rule follower mod...

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-23-2009, 02:07 PM
Just make sure that you are cooking/freezing/storing in line with your local health codes - LA and OC allow NO product cooked, precooked or frozen at a residential location and then sold or even given away. Rule follower mod...


In an earlier post I said I am using a compliant kitchen at the church, or the town hall basement which are both just a few doors down the street from me. I expect that will be acceptable, but I might be wrong. I do appreciate your concern and helpful comment.

MrsMista
02-23-2009, 02:28 PM
In an earlier post I said I am using a compliant kitchen at the church, or the town hall basement which are both just a few doors down the street from me. I expect that will be acceptable, but I might be wrong. I do appreciate your concern and helpful comment.

Out here if you use a kitchen you have to list the location and their health permit number. If you don't have a permitted kitchen you have purchase all items to be cooked the same day. And on the off chance the health inspector does show up you have to show your receipts.

Sledneck
02-23-2009, 03:09 PM
What are the hours of these farmers markets? Around here they are all typically from 7A- 1Pm

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-23-2009, 03:31 PM
Ours is 9 AM until 1 PM on Saturday morning, but it is very well attended since we are in a tourist area. It is THE thing to do on Saturday morning. Everybody turns out to see each other and stroll around if they buy anything or not.

Sledneck
02-23-2009, 04:04 PM
Just seems like a small window time to sell BBQ

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-23-2009, 04:24 PM
I agree, but it's the only game around. Might not end up working out.

Bigmista
02-23-2009, 06:00 PM
What are the hours of these farmers markets? Around here they are all typically from 7A- 1Pm

Here are our hours taken from the website:

SUNDAYS 10:00-2:00
Atwater Village (Wells Fargo Parking Lot)
3250 Glendale Boulevard


TUESDAYS 8:00-1:00
Torrance 2200 Crenshaw Boulevard
(Charles H. Wilson Park)


WEDNESDAY - 2:00-7:00
Lawndale (in front of Civic Center building)
147th & Hawthorne Blvd


THURSDAY 3:00-7:00
El Segundo
Main Street & Pine Avenue


SATURDAYS - 10:00-2:00
Watts (parking lot in front of park)
103rd & Central Ave. - Ted Watkins Park

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-23-2009, 06:08 PM
Here are our hours taken from the website:

SUNDAYS 10:00-2:00
Atwater Village (Wells Fargo Parking Lot)
3250 Glendale Boulevard


TUESDAYS 8:00-1:00
Torrance 2200 Crenshaw Boulevard
(Charles H. Wilson Park)


WEDNESDAY - 2:00-7:00
Lawndale (in front of Civic Center building)
147th & Hawthorne Blvd


THURSDAY 3:00-7:00
El Segundo
Main Street & Pine Avenue


SATURDAYS - 10:00-2:00
Watts (parking lot in front of park)
103rd & Central Ave. - Ted Watkins Park


Seems like you are selling out well before time. What do you do the rest of of the time?

MrsMista
02-23-2009, 06:24 PM
Seems like you are selling out well before time. What do you do the rest of of the time?

Some of the markets have rules that you can not leave before the market closes. This is understandable depending on where you're situated at the market. So you just schmooze the crowd and tell them you will bring more the next time.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-23-2009, 06:32 PM
Some of the markets have rules that you can not leave before the market closes. This is understandable depending on where you're situated at the market. So you just schmooze the crowd and tell them you will bring more the next time.

Our market makes you stay the entire time too.

You guys gotta get your sauces and rubs in production. Bet you could make a mint with them after the meat runs out. I was thinking about selling Brethren rubs and sauces to fill in the time. i don't know if i will even try to do a sauce or rub in the foreseeable future.

Bigmista
02-23-2009, 06:54 PM
Maybe we will start selling Bigmista's Brand New Funk rub in baggies.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-27-2009, 02:05 PM
Great news. I just got off the phone with the state health department and it couldn't have gone better.

They say I need to get a Home Catering Permit, which allows me to prep the meat in my home kitchen, smoke it by my house and then take it hot to the farmer's market to vend.

My well water has to be tested but no mods to my kitchen are going to be needed.

He was very helpful. He said that he was much happier that I aim to cook it and keep it hot. Said that most people get in trouble cooling and re-heating to sell.

So, that was the key piece of the puzzle. I am going to submit my application to vend on Monday.

Now the work begins in ernest.

big brother smoke
02-27-2009, 03:26 PM
Great news. I just got off the phone with the state health department and it couldn't have gone better.

They say I need to get a Home Catering Permit, which allows me to prep the meat in my home kitchen, smoke it by my house and then take it hot to the farmer's market to vend.

My well water has to be tested but no mods to my kitchen are going to be needed.

He was very helpful. He said that he was much happier that I aim to cook it and keep it hot. Said that most people get in trouble cooling and re-heating to sell.

So, that was the key piece of the puzzle. I am going to submit my application to vend on Monday.

Now the work begins in ernest.


WTG, Jim! Time to make some xtra change!

Bigmista
02-27-2009, 03:28 PM
They say I need to get a Home Catering Permit,

WE don't even have this in California. No cooking in home kitchens period.

leanza
02-27-2009, 09:17 PM
That's why California SUCKS! I can't wait to move, one day, to a place where it's business friendly.

Bentley
02-27-2009, 10:43 PM
That's why California SUCKS! I can't wait to move, one day, to a place where it's business friendly.


Amen!

California is a beautiful state...Just not LA!

Bbq Bubba
02-28-2009, 07:34 AM
Jim, i would advise you to contact your county Health dept before getting your hopes up.
A home catering permit???
Have never heard of such a thing, state people sometimes have the habit of telling you what you want to hear.....check with your locals as their the ones doing the inspections.
Otherwise, congrats my brother, you are well on your way!:biggrin:

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
02-28-2009, 07:39 AM
The guy I talked to is THE guy. I called the Health Dept , Ag Department and other vendors at the farmer's market. He is at State Health Department, Department of Food and Lodging. He now has me in contact with the right person to get the Home Catering Permit.

Gotta LOT of work to do before mid May when the market opens.

TysDad
02-28-2009, 09:32 AM
Maybe we will start selling Bigmista's Brand New Funk rub in baggies.

Is it a white powder that makes your tongue numb?


WE don't even have this in California. No cooking in home kitchens period.


So even the unbelievable Butter Pecan Pound Cake ???


.

Bigmista
02-28-2009, 05:56 PM
Is it a white powder that makes your tongue numb?





So even the unbelievable Butter Pecan Pound Cake ???


.

No...not as far as you know.

big brother smoke
02-28-2009, 06:35 PM
Jim, i would advise you to contact your county Health dept before getting your hopes up.
A home catering permit???
Have never heard of such a thing, state people sometimes have the habit of telling you what you want to hear.....check with your locals as their the ones doing the inspections.
Otherwise, congrats my brother, you are well on your way!:biggrin:

Bubba,

Vermont has some loose catering laws. Lost Nation took us through this a while back.

Bentley
02-28-2009, 09:23 PM
Bubba,

Vermont has some loose catering laws. Lost Nation took us through this a while back.


What you choose to call loose, I bet others call wise! :razz:

When are you taking me out for that World Record Blue Marlin?

Weiser
02-28-2009, 10:46 PM
Thanks for this thread Jim and all who have chimed in.
I'm thinking about doing much the same thing.
Other than doing the meat and sides,
I'm clueless. This has been a big help.

Weiser



The guy I talked to is THE guy. I called the Health Dept , Ag Department and other vendors at the farmer's market. He is at State Health Department, Department of Food and Lodging. He now has me in contact with the right person to get the Home Catering Permit.

Gotta LOT of work to do before mid May when the market opens.

macforty
03-01-2009, 11:25 AM
Great set up.Keep it going