Are you ready to turn your passion for food and cooking into a money-making business? In this article, you will learn the different food business ideas you can start today and make money. The food industry offers huge business opportunities for entrepreneurs to sell and create unique food and drink items for people.
Food is one of the basic necessities of life and so, an essential part of human development. There is not a living soul who does not need food or water to survive. This means that everyone is your target customer and your business can thrive anywhere in the world.
Food business involves food preparation, processing, storing, manufacturing, packaging, transportation, distribution, delivery, and offering of food items for sale. You can start from your kitchen and expand as the business grows.
Do you have a passion for the food industry? This is for you!. Read on. I will explain the trending and high in-demand food business ideas you can start today.
Watch the full video of all the food business ideas you can start and how to start them here. Also, subscribe to our channel to get more business ideas and insights.
Popular Food Business Ideas You Can Start In Nigeria
There are different food business ideas you can venture into. We are going to look at them one after the other.
Catering is one of the food business ideas that involve cooking, delivering, and serving meals. Caterers may be hired to cook, deliver, and serve meals in schools, churches, hospitals, aircraft, and for occasions. They can do indoor or outdoor services, change the menu to fit specific occasions, and adapt to their client’s plans.
Catering services is a profitable business that allows you the opportunity to travel on local and international trips just to provide cooking services.
This is a private food business that provides cooking services to individuals. It is usually done in the client’s home kitchen based on needs and preferences. Personal chefs customize a meal plan, shop the groceries (optional), prepare the meals on a particular date, package, and refrigerate.
This job is done by someone with the skill and passion for cooking. They may work on a full-time basis in a restaurant, then serve as chefs on a personal schedule. They are mostly hired by executives or high-net-worth individuals who do not have the time or skill to cook their meals.
A bakery is one of the high in demand food business ideas that sell in all locations. It involves selling flour-based food, baked in an oven. It can be bread, cakes, snacks, pie, and confectioneries. Also, they can sell more than just baked foods by adding coffee, tea, or other drinks to their offering.
Bakery business can start from your kitchen. As your business grows, you can expand and rent a space.
This is a type of food business idea that serves already prepared food and drinks to consumers. Restaurants cater to customers who do not have the time to cook and want to eat as soon as possible. Restaurants usually specialise in one type of meal or have a limited menu at different times of the day. A restaurant can major in local dishes, intercontinental dishes, family-style cafeterias, take-aways, casual dining, and many more.
A food kiosk is a food business done in a temporary booth or stand at bus stops, movie theatre, malls, or other high-traffic locations. It involves selling fast food at different times of the day. For instance, a food kiosk may sell noodles and eggs, smoothies, shawarma, Akara and fried yam, stick meat, suya, bread, and egg, or other kinds of fast meal that comes in handy.
It is one of the profitable food business ideas you can start on a low-budget, and get regular income from.
This is a mobile food vending business that offers a wide range of ready-to-eat food for on-street customers. It can be done with a van or trailer equipped to cook, prepare, serve, and sell food. A food truck is usually situated at the bus top, busy street, or market places where purchased meals can be consumed or taken away. It is often called a restaurant on the wheels.
A food truck can deal on baked items, bread, ice cream, beverage, coffee, salad, or other varieties of dishes. Operating a food truck business does not require huge startup capital when compared to other food businesses like a brick-and-mortar restaurant. The cost of rent is reduced and you can move to any location at any time. You may also vend for events, carnivals or exhibitions, and trade fairs.
This is one of the most-popular food business ideas. It is often called a supermarket and involves selling food and other household items. They deal in a wide range of products like uncooked and ready-to-be-eaten food items, drinks, kitchen utensils, flowers, beverages, snacks, and all other kinds of daily items.
A grocery store offers a one-stop-center where you can purchase everything under one roof and make payment at once. Depending on the arrangement, there could also be an opportunity to take online orders and deliver to customers. It is one of the most competitive businesses in the world today, but highly profitable if done right.
This is a perfect food business idea for extreme food lovers who are passionate about cooking and passing on the knowledge to others. It involves offering cooking courses to women, men, singles, couples, and groups.
Cooking classes can be offline or online through videos or text in cookery books or blogsites. However, it is best if is practicable. You will teach different techniques and the right recipes for each meal. Also, it involves teaching about local and international dishes, and food items for different occasions and specific purposes.
Fruit mart is a retailing business that involves selling all kinds of fruit to customers. It requires selling seasonal and non-seasonal fruit items like apple, carrot, cucumber, orange, banana, lemon, watermelon, pineapple, etc. to consumers.
In a fruit mart, fruit items are best arranged in a way that passersby can be attracted to. It is a very profitable business and you can be patronised by all age groups.
Cookery book is an evergreen revenue stream that allows you to share your deep understanding of dishes with your customers. If you have the skill to cook as many dishes as possible, you can put them into writing and have them sold to customers.
Step By Step Plan On How To Start Food Business Ideas In Nigeria
It is now time to convert the food business ideas into a sustainable business. Beyond passion, you need a business model that allows you to creatively deliver value to your target audience. The following will guide you on the basic steps you need to take.
Research And Pick A Niche
The first step is to do thorough research and find out the market you want to serve. Asking questions like who do I want to target? Do I want to target students, elites, executives, or low-income earners? Will the market be able to afford the kind of meal I want to serve? Or should I create specific ethnic meals?
All of these questions will inform your location, amount to invest, the number of employees to employ, and other important factors for proper planning. More so, you need to research what the market prefers to buy, why they buy, and the competition.
Develop A Business Plan
Everyone would want to skip this step in business feeling it is less important. But on the contrary, it is one of the most appropriate things to do even before you begin your business. A business plan is a written document that outlines the goals, vision, and objectives of the business. It is a road map that suggests the next line of action and the way to go.
A business plan is usually written from the result of business research. Beyond the paperwork, doing research will enable you to know the basics of the business and give you insights into what you’re getting into. It will enable you to ask questions like, what kind of food should I sell? Is there a demand for the type of food I want to sell? Who are the existing competitors? How do I stand out? How long will it take to break even in the business? Who are my consumers? And many others.
Start Up Capital
Food businesses demand money and time. It is capital intensive whether it is done on a small or large scale. Before you begin to make a profit, you must have created awareness for your brand and gain customers’ trust. But until then, you need to keep financing the business.
So, to start the business, have a source of income that caters to the startup and running cost at least for a period of time. Cost elements include rent and location set up, equipment purchase, employee salaries, marketing costs, logistics, and ingredient costs. Your business plan will list these costs and you will decide if you can finance it yourself or source for funding.
There are different ways to finance your business. We discussed the different ways to finance your business here. Go through it and choose the one that works best for you. It’s always best to start small, test the waters and scale gradually.
Register The Business
Registering your business is the first step to structuring it. And this requires registering with the Corporate Affairs Commission and other appropriate authorities. This way, customers can trust your services and you can enjoy benefits tailored to business owners.
Firstly, choose the perfect name that explains your business offering, secure the name at CAC, then register it. You can do it yourself or hire the service of experts like ReDahlia. Reach out to ReDahlia at 43B Emina Crescent off Toyin Street, Ikeja Lagos, or email@example.com.
Thereafter, proceed to register with the National Agency for Food And Drug Administration Control, obtain the necessary permits and licenses relating to the food business and unique to your state of operation.
Location And Set Up
Your location can make or break your food business dream. It will determine the kind of menu to create, sales volume, and the kind of people that will patronise you.
You can start the business from your kitchen and take orders online. That way, you can expand at your pace. But if you are looking to have a physical location, consider access to the target market, hygiene, size and space, parking space, access to water, access to customers and suppliers, safety, future expansion, etc.
If you are renting a space, make sure the projected financial revenue will be enough to pay for the rent. Also, ensure to fashion out compartments like dining area, cooking area, serving area, store, and restroom layout. Then, get the right tools and equipment.
Equipment Needed For A Food Business
For any of the food business ideas mentioned, these are the basic equipment you need
- Hand washing sinks
- Tables and chairs
- Dust bin, broom, bucket, mop
- Food cutter, Knifed
- Bowls and buckets
- Pot, fryer and cooking gas
- Dish and cutleries
As earlier stated, the food business requires time and money. Beyond that, you need employees who will support the dreams and vision of the business. You can not possibly run the business on your own. So you should look to hire basic staff like cooks, waiter, and waitresses, servers, drivers, etc.
Also, for a more professional outlook, you may require your staff to wear uniforms. Aside from a uniform for the general staff, the chef and servers should wear aprons, hairnets, and other uniform items. You may choose a unique style or color that goes in line with your brand.
Marketing And Promotion
How you market your food business and get customers is highly important because this will determine if you will stay in the business for long. Hence, you must strive to create awareness and ensure your business is perceived in the right light.
Some of the ways to do this include;
Whatever business you are doing, if you want to stand out, then building an online presence is a must. Without an online presence, your food business will be limited only to walk-in customers and this can limit your profit. So, by taking your business online, you remove geographical barriers.
An online presence involves building a website and leveraging social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. With a website, the online audience can get full information about your service offerings, look through your menu list, and place orders.
Through social media, you can build a loyal community by sharing educational content about food. This will help generate traffic and increase sales.
Brand Your Business
Your branding defines what your business is all about and what you stand for. It gives the customers an idea of what you want them to think of and set the tone of your business. Therefore, it is important to design a logo, business card, flyers, and brand messages that give a clear illustration of your food business.
The message can be used across all social media platforms, on your delivery box, and as an awareness material for incoming customers. Basically, how you market yourself will create a good or bad impression of you and your business. So, you must be creative in creating brand messages.
Other Promotional Techniques
- Encourage your friends and families to tell their friends and family.
- Visit companies, schools, and homes within your vicinity to create awareness.
- Offer discounts on special days and make sure to deliver the best services.
- Get listed on business directories
- Consider starting a blog that discusses food to promote your business and earn additional income.
- Hand out free samples of your food to your friends, families, and the people within your locality.
The food business requires sound practical knowledge about cooking, organisational skill, product positioning, creative marketing strategies, cleanliness, passion, and determination to succeed. If all of these are in place, then your small food business can turn to a big food brand.
As soon as you start, remember that your business needs visibility to scale. So, write to us today to put your business on the world map.
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