If you are a caterer, baker, restaurant, or food truck owner, you must submit these permits and documents to operate as a legal business in Monroe County and within The Commissary. This type of food operation will be regulated by the Monroe County Health Department.
If you are a producer of packaged food goods or shelf stable food products, you must submit these permits and documents to operate as a legal business in Monroe County and within The Commissary. This type of food operation will be regulated by the Department of Agriculture & Markets.
Still not sure which Department will permit your food business? Click here.
These permits and documents must be submitted in order to operate as a legal food business in Monroe County and to use The Commissary facilities.
Interested in taking your idea for a packaged food good from home kitchen to grocery store shelves? This presentation from local experts will help you get started.
Cornell Venture Center
With one of the world's leading food science universities just down the road, we are very fortunate to have Cornell as an affordable, knowledgeable resource for food business of all scales. The CFVC provides process reviews for safety and stability of food products with focus on small and mid-sized manufacturers and entrepreneurs.
For more information on different types of food goods and the regulations surrounding each, along with instructions and the required documents, check out The CFVC Guide. Still looking for more direction about what regulations your food product requires? Give the team a call at (315) 787-2280.
New York State Food Processors Association
The purpose of the Associated New York State Food Processors is to create an environment for the food manufacturing sector to be able to network with similar companies and suppliers sharing ideas and solutions for their everyday needs. The Association brings companies and individuals together that have experience and resources that enable food processors to improve their operation and explore new technologies.
- Norm Brown - Burch Bottle: large assortment of containers and closures perfect for condiments, syrups, honey, sauces, spices etc.
- Jeff Andolora - Adflex Corp: Pressure sensitive label supplier located in Rochester, NY
- Tom Seymour - Maco Bag: Supplier of bags and pouches, inhouse manufacturing and assembly
- Juan Pellecer - Covance: 3rd Party Product Development Resource
In addition to the resources and workshops created by The Commissary, there are many great sources of information and guidance within our region for food business entrepreneurs:
Central Library of Rochester: Business Division
The Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County has many tools that an aspiring food entrepreneur needs to make their business a success. Their expert business research specialists can help you.
Kiva is an international nonprofit, founded in 2005 and based in San Francisco, with a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty. They celebrate and support people looking to create a better future for themselves by expanding access to capital for entrepreneurs around the world. To see if you qualify for a Kiva loan, click here. To learn more, attend one of their workshops!
The Kraft Heinz Company has launched The Springboard Incubator Program! This program is dedicated to "nurturing, scaling, and accelerating growth" of disruptive food and beverage products. To learn more and to see if you are a good fit, click here. Deadline for the summer program is April 4th!
Social Media Tools
Looking to enhance your social media presence? Feel like you don't have the time or tools to succeed? Check out this brief guide outlining easy to use resources.
The Food Corridor Resource Center
The Food Corridor's mission is "to enable efficiency, growth, and innovation in local food systems". On their resource page, you will find the "latest and most useful resources for the shared-use kitchen community".
Healthy INSIDER Podcast
Listen to some experts discuss the importance of investing in entrepreneurs to help them take innovative ideas and transform them into scalable, on-trend, products. You will also learn more about common challenges faced and how supply chain investment is critical.