Creating a Gold Standard Product
Learn to work with the system, not against it
Business Plan Templates:
A business plan will help you understand what you need to get started. You can access a guide for writing your business plan on SBA's website.
Operating resources: Think about what it will take to run the business each day. Will you need employees? What will the hours of the business be? Will you close for weekends and holidays?
Overall market plan: This section should answer questions like: Who are the target customers for the business? Are there any businesses providing the same service that might be in competition with your business? Would a particular location in the city be important for your business to succeed?
Cost and sales structure: Each product you sell costs something to make, and each service you provide takes staff time. Carefully calculate your costs so that you know how much you need to charge customers in order to make money.
Financial management and business growth: Using your estimates of what it will cost to open your business, operate, do marketing, and sell to customers, calculate how much money you need to start. Keep in mind that there may be a gap in time between when you start on the path to opening your business and when you receive the first profits. Have a plan to help finance your business and consider reaching out to a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), which will provide credit and financial services to entrepreneurs. A business plan is required if applying for funding through a bank.
Every business needs a way to get customers. Write about how you plan to advertise and sell your goods. Make sure to note what those marketing and sales activities will cost and how long they will take.
Understand start up costs: The key to a successful business is preparation. Before your business opens its doors, you’ll have bills to pay. Understanding your expenses will help you launch successfully.
Labs, Organizations and Consultants
These entities support "good food" product development ranging from culinary and food science labs to foundations and networks in the academic and industry worlds.
- Drexel Food Lab: "a faculty-mentored interdisciplinary food product design and culinary innovation research lab solving real-world problems in sustainability, health promotion and access"
- Food, Nutrition, and Human Performance (FNHP) Core Facility: "provide high-quality scientific analyses for individuals, research teams and companies to meet their food and bionutrition needs"
- Cornell Food Venture Center "Provide assistance to ensure safety and stability of food products entering the marketplace"
- Eurofins: Provides a "unique range of analytical testing services to the pharmaceutical, food, environmental and consumer products industries and to governments"
- Invisible Sentinel: Lab testing services in food, beer, wine, and cannabis
- EMSL Analytical, Inc.: "Provides testing services, sampling supplies, test kits and building inspection tools to identify microbial and chemical exposure risks following storm damage in residential, commercial and institutional properties."
- Rutgers Innovation Center: "supports established early stage entrepreneurs and existing food companies from concept to commercialization... [providing] business, marketing, food safety, product design and scale up expertise within FDA and USDA certified facilities to help companies successfully build and grow their business."
- Upcycled Food Association, Foundation, and Certification: "A nonprofit working to prevent food waste by accelerating the upcycled economy."
- Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia: "A community of local independent businesses that demonstrates the degree to which businesses can build profitable enterprises while serving community needs, sharing wealth, and protecting the environment."
- Startup CPG: " A national community for emerging brands and those who support them. Share questions, opportunities, and expertise."
- The Dorrance H. Hamilton Center For Culinary Enterprises: "supports both established and start-up food businesses and food processors in need of commercial kitchen space and business support."
These consultants are experts in a range of fields; from food science to FDA-compliant labeling. They can be helpful to contact with specific questions, challenges, or requests.
- Kantha Shelke: Author, educator, and food scientist "who expedites new product and technology development int he food and nutrition sector."
- Lauren Swann: Nutrition communications, food & nutrition labeling consultant, writer, registered dietitian at Concept Nutrition, Inc.
- Catapult Consulting: Co-packing headhunter, food science R&D
- Rodeo CPG: "For brands in need of a trusted partner to help with their product development, operations, or retail sales"
- Cohere: "Specializes in design-forward branding and marketing for hospitality"
Certain guidelines must be followed in order to widely distribute a food product. The guidelines span disciplines including food safety and dietary guidelines.
- FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA): Rules and Guidance for Industry shift the focus towards preventing food borne illness.
- Bad Bug Book: Basic facts regarding food borne pathogens and natural toxins published by the FDA.
- Current Good Manufacturing Practices (CGMP): Regulations address issues on personal hygiene, designing and constructing a food plant, maintenance of plant grounds, equipment, sanitary operations, food production process and controls. 21 CFR Part 117.
- Safe Recipe Style Guide: Designed for use by any recipe writer who writes and publicizes recipes for distribution to the public.
- Assess Food-Handling Practices: Audit tool to assess employee food-handling practices.
- When & How to Wash Your Hands: The CDC's resources on hand washing offered in various languages
- Food Safety Throughout the Food System: Contains information on food safety and preservation for consumers, food service workers, and food processors.
- Dietary Guidelines for Americans
- Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs): "The DRIs represent the most current scientific knowledge on nutrient needs of healthy populations. Please note that individual requirements may be higher or lower than the DRIs."
- DRI Calculation for Healthcare Professionals: "Enter height, weight, age, and activity to generate a report of the following items: Body Mass Index (BMI), Estimates daily calorie needs, Recommended intakes o macronutrients, water, vitamins, and minerals based on DRI data."
- MyPlate Resources: "The MyPlate Plan shows your food group targets - what and how much to eat within your calorie allowance."
- City of Philadelphia Nutrition Standards: "Nutrition standards are an evidence-based strategy to align meals and snacks within the latest dietary guidance. They are a model for other large institutions and employers, and send a market signal to suppliers to provide competitively prices healthy food options."
- Fraud and Nutrition Misinformation: Identifying nutrition misinformation and fraudulent health claims.
- Historical Dietary Guidance Digital Collection: Are you a history buff? This site provides context in the U.S. approach to human nutrition since the 1890s.
If you would like your laboratory or organization listed on this page, please email all applicable information to Drexelfoodlab@drexel.edu. Hyperlinks or references to any businesses, services, organizations, or websites of third parties on this website do not constitute or imply their endorsement, sponsorship, or recommendation by Drexel University