Preparing for Your Food Product Development Consultation

Whether you’re scaling an established product line or creating something entirely new from scratch, your food product development consultation will set the tone for the rest of the collaboration. It pays to be prepared – this guide will help you gather the materials and information that your development company will surely request.

Understanding Food Product Development

If this is your first time working with a product development firm, it helps to familiarize yourself with the services typically offered. Some firms keep things relatively basic – going no further than typical consulting – and others will have full scale laboratories that can analyze your product from top to bottom completely in-house.

Full service firms even have marketing experts on staff to direct everything from market research to launch, and development companies often have close connections with graphic designers and packaging agencies as well. Scour every development company website you can find so that you’ll know what the development company can likely handle and what you’ll have to take to a third-party resource.

What You Will Need

A strong description of your goals, current capabilities, and long-term projections are necessary. Your product development firm needs to know which resources you have at your disposal and how you plan to scale your product in the future.

Goals are important, but your recipe will take center stage. Your recipe should detail a list of ingredients by weight, the quality standards you use to choose ingredients, whether your ingredients are wet or dry, and the brands or formulations that you prefer. A detailed explanation of your current production process is also important: how long you marinade certain ingredients, whether you stir gently or vigorously, cooking and cooling times, etc.

The food product development company will also want a sample of your recipe as you make it.

Other non-recipe related requirements will include a workable budget and projections for scaling needs. You will also need to have a good idea of how you will approach production now and in the future – whether you use a co-packer, shared kitchen, or your own commercial prep space. These will all affect the way the development firm will approach your new commercially-viable product.

Before talking to any development firm, you’ll want to sign a non-disclosure agreement. The firm itself often provides this agreement – a firm that starts asking questions without an agreement should raise red flags. Stories of stolen recipes are rare, but surprisingly there is a market for such things.

Don’t worry about having every single piece of information documented and filed. The entire job of a food development company is to make the process easier for you, whether you are a brand new startup or an experienced culinary genius. Just get out there, keep an open mind, and let your initial consultation serve as a source of inspiration and motivation for the lengthy development process.

How to Introduce Your Gourmet Food Business

It is most likely that you often invite your friends and relatives to keep sampling your best dishes because you love gourmet foods. People who love cooking so much are always doing this, but the best way to expose your dishes to people is by opening a food business.

To introduce as many people to your gourmet food business as much as possible, just invite as many of them as you can on the day you start producing the food and let them taste your cooking free of charge. You need not implore them to come and buy, but just tell them to feel free to serve themselves. That is how you will end up with loyal customers.

You could also go as a volunteer at a school function or a place like that where your cooking will be sampled by all. If you take time to make as many varieties as possible for such occasions, you will soon find parents and staff, asking about your dishes.

This will start landing you some invitations to serve at smaller functions, house warming or birthday parties. That is a good way to start acquiring a small customer base.

Another step to take is to attend as many house parties as possible and be sure to carry one of your favorite gourmet food items. As they begin to praise your dishes, you will be signing on customers without them knowing it.

Of course many people will begin to notice you and your kindness. It will win you many friends and as the social circle continues to widen, so will your list of future customers. You might also find that a few people will begin to buy from you.

If you care to join some community activities; like volunteer work in a church, school or social center, it will give you a good opportunity to meet more people and let them sample your food.

At first it will be expensive on you as you try to charge moderately for the food, but you must keep it up. To do this, you will need to do your shopping economically and serve just small portions which will not drain more of your money. Remember when one day the business starts to grow; will be a good time to recover your costs.

Carry with you some of your best dishes as you go to different functions, and your list of gourmet food items will continue to grow on people’s pallets. Soon they will start looking for you to sell to them.

Factors You Need to Consider While Introducing a New Food Product

Change is inevitable. It is impossible to progress without making necessary changes. What seems to be good and sufficient for today, may not be adequate for tomorrow. All aspects of our lives, starting from food to clothes, leisure to entertainment, jobs to careers need to be changed at some point of time for making advancements. Designers, providers and manufacturers of every product inevitably fail to meet the expectations of their customers after a certain point of time. Even when the products are absolutely up to the mark, manufacturers need to make changes to cater successfully to the changes in the tastes, preferences and requirements of customers.

Smart manufacturers recognize the significance of making changes and introducing new products in the market. They constantly strive to understand the changing tastes and needs of their customers in order to update their products efficiently. When it comes to our food habits, they keep on changing with the passage of time. The increasing popularity of ready made food products and a variety of junk food has marked a noticeable change in peoples’ food habits in recent times. Increasing work pressure and scarcity of time has led to a decrease in peoples’ tendency to prepare nutritious food and a tendency to opt more and more for ready made and junk foods. These changes in peoples’ lifestyles call for new food products that can successfully cater to their needs and preferences of customers.

When you are introducing a new food product in the market, it is necessary to keep in mind certain important aspects in order to make it a success. Let us discuss some of the significant factors:

  • Innumerable products are introduced in the market every year. The key to success is to make sure that the food product you manufacture must be something new and innovative, which would successfully cater to the requirements of the customers. It must fill an empty space in the market in order to become a success.
  • Make a thorough research to obtain necessary information regarding the local laws related to retail food jobs. The product you introduce in the market must be eligible to pass regulatory standards.
  • It is extremely important to make a thorough research of the market. You must obtain detailed information regarding every aspect related to a successful marketing of your product starting from the packaging to the store where you would sell your product to your target customers. You must know your target customers and their tastes and preferences in order to market your products more efficiently.
  • Make a list of all the necessary aspects including the services, proprietary tools and techniques and materials required to manufacture the new food product and market it to target customers. Considering these important aspects help in knowing the costs involved in the entire process, and also the various ways you can cut down on the costs while still maintaining the standard of the product.

Besides keeping in mind the above mentioned factors, it is also extremely important to take good care of sanitation and the local laws. It is also overly important to plan meticulously and carefully to carry out the entire manufacturing and marketing process efficiently and successfully.