Working from home is handy. If you’re launching a food service business, you can do so by creating a separate licensed kitchen in addition to your home kitchen, or by licensing your home kitchen under the cottage kitchen regulations that many states have in place. The latter method is far more straightforward, but it significantly restricts the kind of items you may create and sell, as well as the amount of product you can manufacture. Converting your kitchen to a commercial kitchen offers up a world of possibilities while still allowing you to feed your family and guests in your personal kitchen.
Make an effort to get a commercial-grade kitchen.
Purchase and install all essential business equipment while adhering to commercial kitchen design requirements. For example, you may be needed to have a certain number of commercial sinks or specific cooking equipment to lawfully operate a food-based business. If you want to bake using a 40-year-old oven, a state or county health inspector is unlikely to certify your kitchen. New equipment will increase your chances of having your kitchen accredited, as well as benefit your firm as a whole.
Licensing and zoning
Consult your local zoning authority to see if the zoning classification of your house permits you to construct a commercial kitchen there. Because a commercial kitchen may add noise, traffic, and smells to an otherwise calm residential neighborhood, restrictions are typically stricter in metropolitan areas. If you live in a rural location, there may be less limitations on whether or not you may add a commercial kitchen to your house, but you will need to demonstrate that your water supply is clean and safe.
Develop a working connection with a specific individual at your local zoning agency if you can. This will ensure that you get consistent responses to your inquiries and will prevent you from having to rehash your issue every time you want assistance.
Choosing the Right Location
Of course, the placement of your home commercial kitchen is constrained by your available space. Consider where it will be most convenient to connect to existing plumbing. This will save you money on construction. However, it is preferable to spend a little more and build your kitchen in a location where noise and odors will not disrupt your family’s daily lives than to save a little and suffer with irritation.
Consider the possibilities and constraints for loading and unloading from various areas of your home. It’s preferable not to have to carry your inventory or finished product up two flights of stairs if it’s uncomfortable and heavy. Commercial refrigeration units, for example, may be difficult, if not impossible, to fit into some areas of your home, such as a basement with a low ceiling.
Creating Your Kitchen Design
Unless you live in a mansion, you’re unlikely to have a large enough space for a commercial kitchen. Make the most of your area. Hang shelves on the walls and use under-counter storage to integrate storage into the main cooking space.
Choose appliances that are big enough to get the job done but not too big. Refrigerators and mixers should be placed where the noise will cause the least disruption to your family’s routine.