Have you carved your career path in the food industry? Perhaps you’ve been working as a cook, a pastry chef, a baker or chocolatier for many years and are skilled in your craft? If so, you’ll probably reach the stage at one time or another where you want to spread your wings. Instead of working for other companies, you might have dreams of setting up by yourself and bringing your own vision to life. If so, here are a few directions you could go in.
Many chefs have dreams of cooking in their very own restaurants. Instead of having to follow the rules of your employers, you get to call the shots. You can choose the menu, create your own recipes and generally have more creative freedom. Opening a restaurant is a massive job, there are lots of positions to fill both front of house and behind the scenes. If you’re the one doing the cooking, you’ll need someone to manage the rest of the restaurant for you, including taking bookings, promoting, and finding the right point of sale for small restaurants. You’ll need waiters, a sous chef, pot washers, porters and more. It can take a lot of funding and planning to get set up, but get it right and it’s any chefs dream job.
Perhaps you’ve worked in the food industry for years, but aren’t necessarily a trained chef. If so, you can still open your own business with some basic training and a food hygiene certificate. If you open a cafe, you can make sandwiches, cooked breakfasts and other tasty lunches that are relatively easy to make without needing to spend years at catering college. Another idea would be to buy a food truck. You can make good money selling things like burgers, hot dogs, hot chocolate and other drinks at festivals, outside nightclubs and at special events.
Do you have a passion for baking? Maybe you’ve worked as a baker or pastry chef, or perhaps you’re self taught but have a real talent for it. If so, you could open your own bakery. You could hire a store and sell from there, or just run things from home. There are some adaptations you’ll need to make to your kitchen, for example, you have to have a separate fridge for home and work. You also can’t have pets in the kitchen (even if it’s just to cut through to the back door) so this is something to consider. But once you’re up and running, you can have a lot of fun creating exciting cakes and bakes.
Caterers are always needed for special events such as weddings, parties and corporate events. As a catering company you can come up with all of your own menus and recipes which is a fun way to use your creativity if you have a passion for food. It’s something you could get into if you’re trained in food, but again could be an idea for those without experience. Take a basic training course and get the right food hygiene certificates. Be sure to do your market research and perfect your recipes.