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-   -   New Catering Business Question (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=96707)

agold791 12-07-2010 10:54 AM

New Catering Business Question
 
A friend and I are working on starting a small BBQ business in NY and I'm trying to figure out our budget. We want to get this started the right way and be totally legit. Besides the HD permits, insurance, and business registration, what is the rough cost of startup? What cooker would you recommend? Any info would be a big help.

Grillman 12-07-2010 11:05 AM

Step number 1
Go to the Health Department, in person, find out what the requirements are for what
you want to do. Some require it all to be built from Stainless Steel. Find out what the
Health Department laws are for where you live. They will likely have these regulation
printed out...so you don't make any mistakes.
Don't spend any money until you have talked to the Health Department. You don't
want to spend money on equipment that you can't use.

Don't assume that something is Legal and OK, because you saw somebody else on the
street doing it. Some people avoid the Health Department regulations by only selling
food on the weekends; when the Health Dept. is closed and they are unlikely to
get caught.

chromestacks 12-07-2010 11:30 AM

The HD is going to tell you that you need a commercial kitchen or commisary. Your home kitchen will not qualify! If you do not have something in the works, check with your church, fire dept, or butcher shop. The insurance that you mention does this include NYS disability? workmans comp? They are also required in addition to liability insurance. What type of catering are you offering? is all food to be cooked onsite? Do you intend to also have a BBQ stand that you sell out of? Grillman also made a valid point about not buying anything until you talk to the HD. GO There In Person. You will have a better understanding of the requirements when you leave. As far as start up cost, at the very minimum I would think you are looking at 8K-15K

agold791 12-07-2010 12:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chromestacks (Post 1477182)
The HD is going to tell you that you need a commercial kitchen or commisary. Your home kitchen will not qualify! If you do not have something in the works, check with your church, fire dept, or butcher shop. The insurance that you mention does this include NYS disability? workmans comp? They are also required in addition to liability insurance. What type of catering are you offering? is all food to be cooked onsite? Do you intend to also have a BBQ stand that you sell out of? Grillman also made a valid point about not buying anything until you talk to the HD. GO There In Person. You will have a better understanding of the requirements when you leave. As far as start up cost, at the very minimum I would think you are looking at 8K-15K

Initially, the plan is to provide a drop-off only service and no bbq stand. We may vend at festivals on occasion if this gets off the ground (I am aware that this would require a separate permit).

jbrink01 12-07-2010 08:49 PM

Matters not how you serve it, the HD will be involved if you go legit. My trailer passes HD, has refrigeration, an FEC500 and hot / cold water / 3 well, etc. $30,000 + $1500 a year in insurance and permits. Pellets at $700 a ton,....................etc

chromestacks 12-07-2010 10:08 PM

you will still need a commisary or a vending truck/trailer that passes the HD requirements. You need this no matter when/where/how you serve

big brother smoke 12-08-2010 12:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chromestacks (Post 1477837)
you will still need a commisary or a vending truck/trailer that passes the HD requirements. You need this no matter when/where/how you serve

That statement has a lot to do with the state you live in. However, personal chefs in most places I heard, can get around the commisary issue. All must simply be done on site and must be a private function! YMMV!

HandsomeSwede 12-08-2010 03:26 PM

The "private chef loophole" is a falsehood. Listen to chrome, looks like he's done this.

PorkQPine 12-08-2010 03:57 PM

If you are going the private chef route make sure you know the rules.

HBMTN 12-08-2010 05:13 PM

I did it last winter, I spent about $30-35k if you count equipment I already had. The all season long it seemed I needed more and more so I spent another $5000 during the season. Now in winter I am looking at growing pains and could spend another $12,000 if I had it. I wouls say done on the cheap you could do it as cheap as $5000 and ski is the limit on the high end.

BigBellyBBQ 12-08-2010 05:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by agold791 (Post 1477137)
A friend and I are working on starting a small BBQ business in NY and I'm trying to figure out our budget. We want to get this started the right way and be totally legit. Besides the HD permits, insurance, and business registration, what is the rough cost of startup? What cooker would you recommend? Any info would be a big help.

Big question here is what your main objective is, full time or just local parties and events. New York State is tough with the comp laws and such to have a workforce, so start out small where the two of you can handle it and cost is up to you and what you have to spend, but be ready!
try to find someone in your area that you wont be stealing thier customers and belly up to them and ask questions, help out on a busy night...

big brother smoke 12-08-2010 05:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HandsomeSwede (Post 1478446)
The "private chef loophole" is a falsehood. Listen to chrome, looks like he's done this.

Ok, I guess, I have no farking idea what I am talking about. :becky:

I also guess, I have never catered a single event :rolleyes:

That term comes from my HD, not a term, I farted out my arse!:becky:


Now, iffin he is doing drop off only, he will need to have a commisary.

I digress!

HBMTN 12-08-2010 06:54 PM

I'm with Big Brother Smoke, here in Va while the personal chef thing walks a fine line I was told pretty much by the HD that they would not have a problem if I cooked onsite but if I cooked and transported food that is where they get involved. If you do the personal chef way it would be a lot cheaper to start out. MY only concern is do you want to set up in a strangers yard the night before and cook all night and use thier kitchen?

JD McGee 12-08-2010 09:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by big brother smoke (Post 1478232)
That statement has a lot to do with the state you live in. However, personal chefs in most places I heard, can get around the commissary issue. All must simply be done on site and must be a private function! YMMV!

Thant's how I roll...on site private catering only! :thumb:

Quote:

Originally Posted by chromestacks (Post 1477837)
you will still need a commissary or a vending truck/trailer that passes the HD requirements. You need this no matter when/where/how you serve

Not true brother...(at least here in WA)...as long as all meats are prepped and cooked on site and you are not selling to the general public...youre good to go! :-P IF you want to serve the general public then you can apply for a vending permit and use a comp set up for hand/dish wash and sanitizing...still an on-site prep and cook...:cool:

JD McGee 12-08-2010 09:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HBMTN (Post 1478611)
I'm with Big Brother Smoke, here in Va while the personal chef thing walks a fine line I was told pretty much by the HD that they would not have a problem if I cooked onsite but if I cooked and transported food that is where they get involved. If you do the personal chef way it would be a lot cheaper to start out. MY only concern is do you want to set up in a strangers yard the night before and cook all night and use thier kitchen?

Think hot-n-fast cooking neighbor! :thumb: I can arrive on site @ 6am prep and cook brisket and pulled pork and be ready to serve by 1pm...seriously...:cool:


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