Food business Resources:

Food Craft Institute: a non-profit institute started in 2011, hosting food entrepreneurship courses in all areas of the food industry (and hey! I just happen to teach there!). 

La Cocina: a non-profit incubator kitchen in San Francisco which helps minority women start and grow food businesses. I've been a volunteer advisor here for over five years! 

The Food Business School: The Culinary Institute of America's business school, where I am a mentor. They are the world's first business school dedicated to food entrepreneurship & innovation.

Kitchen Table Advisors: A non-profit who empowers sustainable small farms with the business tools, knowledge and resources they need to thrive by providing 1:1 in-depth business mentoring. I have been an advisor here for two years. 

Food Tech Connect: An online platform for food innovation. This is the only weekly newsletter that I read on the regular. 


Worthy trade shows:

The Good Food Mercantile: Hosted by The Good Food Awards, this small-scale trade show can provide BIG impact if you're a sustainably produced product looking to attract Specialty Food Buyers. It's also much more affordable and less daunting than the "big" shows, below. 

Fancy Food: THE trade show for food businesses, this show is hosted bi-annually in San Francisco and New York, by the Specialty Food Association. It's a whirlwind of vendors, hundreds of thousands of square feet of products, buyers, and samples galore. Have at least 10K budgeted to spend on the show before you consider showcasing here.

Expo West: The premier trade show for organic and natural focused foods. Again - it's huge but can be worthwhile depending on your brand and budget. 


Merchandising Props:

Sunsbell Strip Lights: The best battery powered LED light strips for lighting up displays and shelving. They're self-adhesive, so you can stick them on the underside of pretty much ANYTHING, and then just flip them on or off as needed, plus you can cut them down to any size. Bring light and attention to your displays with these! I looooove them and install them in almost all retail accounts that I work with. 

Acrylic bins: Seems simple, but they're perfect for holding chocolate bars, confections, and small packaged foods - great for organizing displays without adding clutter because they're clear. 

Risers: in wood and acrylic (or a multipack!) for display building - don't forget to add height and depth to your retail displays, trade shows, and farmer's market's tables! Just make sure you're buying the correct size risers for your unique display. I like risers that don't have a "frame" on the bottom (so they're just three sided instead of a cube) so that you can merchandise product underneath them as well, creating a "waterfall" effect.

Baskets, Bins, Glass Candy Jars, Mini Chalkboard Signs... there are countless possibilities for display building. Just don't forget to confirm the size of the prop that you're purchasing, and make sure it goes with your "vibe!" 

Sign Holders: in metal (i love them in gold too!), rustic wood, and plastic for highlighting your shelf talkers or pricing displays

8.5" x 11" Literature Display: Why not display your sell sheet in an eye-catching stand on your trade table? 

 


Canva: THE place where I make all my graphic design files like shelf talkers and sell sheets, plus my social media posts and graphics for my website. 

Webcam: Have you been wondering how I film all my videos? I swear by this camera to capture great video, and make me look like a million bucks! 

Microphone: If you're going all-in on your own video set up, here's the mic to get! It records beautiful sound even when you have background noise, and plugs right in to a USB port. It couldn't be easier to use. If you record podcasts or audio, this is key. 

On-The-Go Lavalier Microphone: If you're recording as you're out-and-about and recording video on your phone (think: trade shows, farmer's markets, grocery stores, etc.) this is the microphone to get! It plugs directly into your phone and makes a world of difference with sound quality.

Marketing Materials:


Co-Packer Resources


Here's a round up of my favorite food business and cook books! 

books: 

 
By Ari Weinzweig
By Sam Mogannam, Dabney Gough
 
By Danny Meyer
 
By Samin Nosrat
 
By Charlie Hopper
 
By Lisa Q. Fetterman, Meesha Halm, Scott Peabody
 

The three things that I can't live without in the kitchen. Seriously. Do not buy any other juicer! 

Kitchen Tools:

 
Nomiku
 
Chef'n
 
Alpha Grillers
 

What other tools, resources, books and props do you swear by? Send your suggestions my way! Click here to drop me an email.