Q:

How can you start a catering business?

A:

Quick Answer

Someone who wants to start a catering business should develop business plans that detail how the business is funded, any specialties (unless the company is in a small area and can offer a broad range of cuisines) and where the food is prepared. Getting the right help and having a plan for marketing are also critical.

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Full Answer

In many localities, it is illegal to work out of a home kitchen. People who are starting catering businesses must get any necessary licenses or certifications. They can rent space in time blocks from commercial kitchens, and in smaller areas, restaurants may rent out their kitchens after hours.

Potential owners of catering businesses should also figure out how to keep cold food cold and hot food hot, especially when transporting the food across significant distances. The job is physically demanding. For example, one van of equipment and lots of lifting and setting up is normal for an occasion with 20 guests.

Some people take business development classes that teach how to write a business plan and other concepts associated with owning a business. Marketing and branding, which involves having a quality website and outreach strategies, can help a catering business get off the ground, and it is helpful to have charming salespeople willing to network.

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