Commissary Kitchens: Starting In The Food Industry

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It is hard to start up in the food industry and many start without a brick and mortar building. There are multiple ways to start up in the food industry without a physical building. Many use food trucks or pop-up shops. In this post we will bring up commissary kitchens and how they are excellent tools for starting up in the food industry.

While these small businesses are good ways to start up in the food industry there are multiple laws that prevent people from just making food from scratch in their food trucks. As much as I do not like the government trying to control people I have less disdain towards these laws. I feel like people should have reservations about planning to make high quality food with dangerous equipment in less than 100 square feet.

In many cities one of these laws are to perform some if not most of the prep work in a commissary kitchen. Even if I hated these laws I see commissary kitchens as a necessity for start ups in the food industry.

What Are Commissary Kitchens?

Also known as community kitchens, these are facilities where multiple different people and businesses can prepare food. These are good places to start work for a business in the food industry. You will have access to a broad variety of equipment. For instance, let’s say you want to start a brewery. However, that does not work because you caught a disease while traveling abroad and you cannot drink beer anymore. You find that you could use those skills to switch to making some of the best bread in the world. (Yes, this is a true story of a food industry owner).

Therefore, you can try one business idea and switch to another if necessary (mind the re-branding though). You could even try multiple business ideas at once.


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How Do You Find Them?

I personally found out about my local commissary from one of the owners of a food stand at my farmers’ market. He told me all about commissary kitchens. He did tell me that it would cost $1,500/month for access to his particular commissary in addition to permits and licenses, but they also have quality commercial equipment. The exact permits and costs will vary locally. There are many websites to find them.

Final Thoughts

Commissary kitchens are an increasing trend. Unfortunately, rent for the good-old brick and mortar restaurants is very high with the average rent being $6,914/month. It is next to impossible to allow restaurants to pick up any traction with that high of expenses. Commissaries can cost around $1,000/month and provide equipment instantly. With every other cost in the food industry from food to insurance it is no wonder more and more entrepreneurs are starting out in commissary kitchens.

The food industry is a tricky business to get into. But what business isn’t? And tricky does not mean difficult. Tricky means you need some tricks. One of the best tricks to starting in the food industry are commissary kitchens. Not only will it start your business at a faster pace, but you will have a community around you who may be your competition, but also friends and mentors. If the food industry is the way you want to go, commissary kitchens are a must to forge your wealth.

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