How to start a catering business from the back of your car!

Discussion in 'Starting a Business' started by martha, Nov 12, 2010.

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  1. martha

    martha
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    Hi guys! This is my first post, so I hope I'm not babbling! :p

    Anyway, this came out of a discussion I was having with a friend who didn't have much capital on hand but wanted to start a business desperately. Why not start a catering business out of the back of your car?

    You could bring hot, steaming food (hot dogs, pies, etc) to hungry construction workers. Cheap, quick, homemade (& healthy) food! They'll love it!

    And you could sell drinks as well.

    You don't really need staff and you don't need to invest in anything except something to keep the food warm and some flyers when you start out! Think about it! : ) Hope this helps out all you entrepreneurial spirits out there!

    P.S. I'd love to hear your comments about this!

    -
    Martha
     
  2. firstchoicecar

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    Very practical and totally indemand business, nice idea too. Anyway welcome to the community, I'm looking forward to read more from your post. Cheers.
     
  3. martha

    martha
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    thanks firstchoicecar! :) I would love to hear any feedback you guys have. out of curiosity, would you face any legal problems selling food from the back of your car where you live?
     
  4. MsMicaela

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    Wow, great idea! Practical and easy start-up. Fast food w/o all that junk haha. Good for you Martha :)
     
  5. martha

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    thanks MsMicaela! :) you're too sweet!
     
  6. Kay

    Kay
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    Nice to meet you martha and welcome to Business Advice Forum. :) My first thought would be you'd have your local Environment officer on your back for a start. Where does your friend live? She'd need to get a license to sell food like that and permission for any location she wants to do it from. I think it's called a street vendor license. Even if she was doing it from the back of her car she still has to stop and park it and that constitutes a site she's selling from. She'd also have her kitchen inspected and it would have to meet commercial healthy and safety standards.

    I know a bit about this because my husband and I toyed years ago with the idea of having an old fashioned hot dog stand. We have a small tourist spot close to us and there's several local fairs and festivals in surrounding towns all summer. We were thinking along the same lines, that we'd go from place to place.

    What we thought would be a fairly simple project turned out to be far more complex than we had ever imagined it would be when we looked into how you go about it all. It was not as easy as you'd think it would be. Get your friend to find out first about the licensing and hygiene regulations side before she starts stocking up on any foodstuffs. We just wanted to do it for a bit of fun over summer and an excuse to be out and about. It was going to be too much of a headache and costly to comply with everything, so we didn't go ahead.
     
  7. Fergal

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    I love simple practical business ideas that can be implemented by almost anyone, so I hate to be negative but I'd have to agree with the concerns raised by Kay. I'm not sure where the business would be based, but in Ireland the regulations around selling food are very strict and it would probably be extremely difficult if not impossible to get the required approval from the Environmental Health Officer to sell hot food from the back of a car.

    Perhaps the regulations are not so strict in your friend's jurisdiction, but it is definitely something that would need to be researched before starting or investing in the business. Maybe your friend can find food products to sell, that are not as highly regulated, such as pre-packaged, lower risk (from a contamination / health perspective) food items.

    Please post back with your thoughts and we will give more positive and helpful suggestions.
     
  8. firstchoicecar

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    Actually i saw that on our community and they called it "vendor-on-the-go" you can buy anything from snacks, lunch, dinner, they also have drinks, fruits even candies. These car roaming around our village because there are few store or grocery can be found on our place. That is why "vendor-on-the-go" is really good start up. Aside from that they will never pay any permits because they are not staying on one place. And so far i never seen any one of them being warned police men or facing any legal problem. So i suggest continue with that business. Good luck. ;)
     
  9. anderson

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    First of all create a catering business plan. This plan will be needed if you try to get a loan to help your catering business get off the ground. It will also help you organize yourself and your business, by answering questions, and ensuring your services are professional and dependable.
    Time management and record keeping skills are important for caterers.You need to plan ahead of schedule, so that when the day of the event comes, everything is well-prepared and there is no need to rush things.
     
  10. tonyallan

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    Anyone looking to start their own Catering business?

    Maybe we can help each other. I'm putting together a course with some friends of mine who are catering business owners. So I don't miss any glaringly obvious questions I need "your" questions on starting a catering business.
     
  11. antigonedd

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    Very good idea. I believe you'll be sucessful.
    Good luck!
    Antigone
     
  12. mikethomsun

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    Visit your local bookstore or library and peruse the cooking books and magazines. Look for new ideas in cooking whether in types of foods or cooking methods that you can add to your repertoire. Creativity is key when learning how to start a catering business.
     
  13. antigonedd

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    Good idea!:)
    You can also have more infos, experience and advices by searching Google.
    Good luck! ;)
     
  14. Fergal

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    Closing old thread. If you would like it re-opened, please send me a quick PM and I'd be delighted to open it for you.
     
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