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Catering, Food Handling and Awareness *OnTopic* Forum to educate us on safe food handling. Not specifically for Catering or competition but overall health and keeping our families safe too.


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Old 08-20-2012, 11:00 PM   #1
INmitch
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Default Honest vending results

As some might know I do comps as Fowl Butt BBQ. A team mate of mine is 31 and is sharp as a tack. He works (basically runs) at a family owned food distribution business. I've been self employed (successfully) since I was 22 now 50. We've got the Idea of getting into vending on a medium to large scale. I think there is money to be made but I would like to hear some honest opinions and testimomials????? PM me if you don't want to post!! I'm burnt out of owning trucks and babysitting 20+ truckdrivers on a daily basis.
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Old 08-21-2012, 02:11 AM   #2
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We have done some vending this year, if you are in connersville we can chat, if not i can give you a call.
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Old 08-21-2012, 07:14 PM   #3
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We've made $7,000 in 2 days and we've lost $1,000 in a day. In my humble opinion, the money is in selling PP Nachos, PP Parfait's, Haystacks, Brisket Salads, etc...Meat costs too much to take a potential beating on it so I shy away from slabs and sandwiches at festivals. To tell the truth, I shy away from festivals anymore. We still sell roadside at a buddy's gas station. Sell 500#'s and go home by 2pm 2 days a week. We cater a bunch as well. Catering is better, but we don't negotiate price much.
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:47 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by jbrink01 View Post
We still sell roadside at a buddy's gas station. Sell 500#'s and go home by 2pm 2 days a week.
That's a dream setup.....
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:40 PM   #5
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That's a dream setup.....
500#'s by 2pm. WOW you must be getting paid
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Old 08-22-2012, 04:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbrink01 View Post
We've made $7,000 in 2 days and we've lost $1,000 in a day. In my humble opinion, the money is in selling PP Nachos, PP Parfait's, Haystacks, Brisket Salads, etc...Meat costs too much to take a potential beating on it so I shy away from slabs and sandwiches at festivals. To tell the truth, I shy away from festivals anymore. We still sell roadside at a buddy's gas station. Sell 500#'s and go home by 2pm 2 days a week. We cater a bunch as well. Catering is better, but we don't negotiate price much.

What's a haystack?
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Old 09-10-2012, 04:27 PM   #7
vexter1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbrink01 View Post
We've made $7,000 in 2 days and we've lost $1,000 in a day. In my humble opinion, the money is in selling PP Nachos, PP Parfait's, Haystacks, Brisket Salads, etc...Meat costs too much to take a potential beating on it so I shy away from slabs and sandwiches at festivals. To tell the truth, I shy away from festivals anymore. We still sell roadside at a buddy's gas station. Sell 500#'s and go home by 2pm 2 days a week. We cater a bunch as well. Catering is better, but we don't negotiate price much.
I agree with Jeff, PP Nachos and sandwiches go really well for us. We do both pulled pork and pulled beef (chuck roasts) - and have a pretty good response from those items. Ribs are a mess to vend IMHO - to make enough money to make them worth the time they will end up being expensive - and the public 'generally' doesn't want to pay what I need them to to make ribs worth my time.

I like festivals (since I don't have a friend with a gas station...lol) - but I watch the entry fees closely and have learned that most of the organizers' numbers are off as far as guests....it's usually much lower - so I make sure I cut back on cooking so I can hti the sweet spot - we recently sold out all 3 days at my last festival, so I'm getting better at gauging attendance and how much to cook.

I've made as much as $4000 over a couple of days, but luckily have always broke even or better at all the events I've vended. I do catering as well - and much like Jeff, the price is what it is. I've found if they want it, they want it - no questions asked. It is much easier than vending however for sure (at least IMHO)


For cpw - a haystack is this - per jbrink01's post -
"We do something very similar called a Haystack. Build in this order; Fritos, PP, Sauce, Shredded Cheese, Shredded Lettuce, Diced Red Onions, Ranch Dressing."
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:14 PM   #8
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For cpw - a haystack is this - per jbrink01's post -
"We do something very similar called a Haystack. Build in this order; Fritos, PP, Sauce, Shredded Cheese, Shredded Lettuce, Diced Red Onions, Ranch Dressing."
Oh, cool. Sounds good!

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Old 09-10-2012, 10:59 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Jacked UP BBQ View Post
500#'s by 2pm. WOW you must be getting paid
No kidding that nearly 2000 sandwiches in a few hours! What cooker do you use?

As for the OP this is our first full time year vending. I can say that there is money in it from a margin prospective but there is also substantial risk and the bigger festivals look better than they turn out. We took a big hit on one event this year, but the other dozen or so were real good. Like any venture put together a biz plan and run the scenarios and see if it makes sense for you. It is a hell of a lot of work but it is rewarding if you have a product everyone is loving, which we do!

Cheers Jeff
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Old 09-10-2012, 11:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vexter1 View Post
I agree with Jeff, PP Nachos and sandwiches go really well for us. We do both pulled pork and pulled beef (chuck roasts) - and have a pretty good response from those items. Ribs are a mess to vend IMHO - to make enough money to make them worth the time they will end up being expensive - and the public 'generally' doesn't want to pay what I need them to to make ribs worth my time.

I like festivals (since I don't have a friend with a gas station...lol) - but I watch the entry fees closely and have learned that most of the organizers' numbers are off as far as guests....it's usually much lower - so I make sure I cut back on cooking so I can hti the sweet spot - we recently sold out all 3 days at my last festival, so I'm getting better at gauging attendance and how much to cook.

I've made as much as $4000 over a couple of days, but luckily have always broke even or better at all the events I've vended. I do catering as well - and much like Jeff, the price is what it is. I've found if they want it, they want it - no questions asked. It is much easier than vending however for sure (at least IMHO)


For cpw - a haystack is this - per jbrink01's post -
"We do something very similar called a Haystack. Build in this order; Fritos, PP, Sauce, Shredded Cheese, Shredded Lettuce, Diced Red Onions, Ranch Dressing."
Shannon,

Call me some time, lost your number bud...

Hope the fam is well and good to see you here...

Jeff
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Old 09-11-2012, 08:30 AM   #11
vexter1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffc View Post
No kidding that nearly 2000 sandwiches in a few hours! What cooker do you use?

As for the OP this is our first full time year vending. I can say that there is money in it from a margin prospective but there is also substantial risk and the bigger festivals look better than they turn out. We took a big hit on one event this year, but the other dozen or so were real good. Like any venture put together a biz plan and run the scenarios and see if it makes sense for you. It is a hell of a lot of work but it is rewarding if you have a product everyone is loving, which we do!

Cheers Jeff
Jeff,

I agree with you - the bigger ones are usually are worst ones. I find that the smaller venues (not too small of course..lol) are the ones we usually do well at - like the 6000-8000 attendance range or so. I'm actually starting to avoid the larger venues and hitting the smaller ones. I also find the smaller venues are generally a little easier to deal with as far as the organizers and amenities (like electricity and such..) - just my $0.2 ;)
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Old 09-11-2012, 08:31 AM   #12
vexter1
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Shannon,

Call me some time, lost your number bud...

Hope the fam is well and good to see you here...

Jeff
Will do Mr. Hughes - I have your number - I'll give ya a call very soon. Good to hear from you as well - everyone here is doing well :) I'll be in touch!
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Old 09-11-2012, 01:08 PM   #13
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We just started this year. Only did 2 vending jobs.
We did very well in both of them but we only cooked for how much we wanted to make, $ wise.. First one we sold out of everything. Ribs, Pork and Brisket sandwiches, baked beans and chips. 2nd one, we did'nt sell out but made more than enough of our money back.
Hoping to do a few more next year. It's a lot of fun I think.. Good luck.
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Old 09-11-2012, 02:53 PM   #14
cynfulsmokersbbq
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No kidding that nearly 2000 sandwiches in a few hours! What cooker do you use?

As for the OP this is our first full time year vending. I can say that there is money in it from a margin prospective but there is also substantial risk and the bigger festivals look better than they turn out. We took a big hit on one event this year, but the other dozen or so were real good. Like any venture put together a biz plan and run the scenarios and see if it makes sense for you. It is a hell of a lot of work but it is rewarding if you have a product everyone is loving, which we do!

Cheers Jeff

Jeff, what was the event you took a hit on? How did the Quad City events turn out? I'd sure love to get into BBQ round-up in CR and the Rib Burn off in Davenport.
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Old 09-12-2012, 12:12 PM   #15
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Jeff, what was the event you took a hit on? How did the Quad City events turn out? I'd sure love to get into BBQ round-up in CR and the Rib Burn off in Davenport.
Hope all is well! This was Sturgis on the river at the fair grounds

As far a the CR round up they haven't let "locals" participate rather the big nationals. This rcvd a bunch of bad press this year and would be surprised if this doesnt change next year. I have heard the Rib event downtown Davenport is a good one. I was on the wait list last year and did get in.
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