With a huge number of hungry mouths and stomachs to feed, new or already existing food entrepreneurs look forward to tapping into the market. Starting a food business is not a simple task though, it is costly and the regulations that accompany the venture can be very discouraging. As a food business owner, you are required to work from a commercial kitchen which is expensive to set up. These will prompt you to rent one and below are considerations to keep in mind and what you should expect.
What is a commercial kitchen?
Commercial kitchens are facilities licensed for the preparation and storage of food on a commercial scale. These licenses are obtained when the authority approves on the cleanliness and safety of the facilities. They are mostly used by food truck owners, independent chefs, startups not equipped with financials to open their kitchen, chefs upgrading their kitchen and even bakers.
What are the types of commercial kitchens?
It is very important to know the amount of space you need, how much money you are willing to spend and also your schedule. This dictates the kind of kitchen you will need i.e. a baker would need large ovens that cover a lot of space.
The common types include:
- Private Kitchen. Though pretty expensive, this kitchen offers you pure freedom and control of the space, equipment and storage all day long. You could arrange your kitchen as you prefer.
- Shared space kitchen. These types of a kitchen are designed to accommodate different chefs or cooks at different times. It works by each food service booking a slot beforehand. This kind of kitchens can be found in schools, churches, retirement homes, hotels and even army barracks. Other food services can also rent out their kitchens when they are closed (Brick and motor restaurants).
What is offered?
The most commonly found provisions in a commercial kitchen include: Preparation tables, dish washing areas, waste disposal area, oven, grill, walk-in freezers, and a storage area. Other services provide kitchen equipment like pots trays and pans. These equipment are available but maybe in use or might fail because you are sharing with other businesses. If bringing your equipment is convenient, then it is recommended you do.
Note that all kitchens do not allow consumer grade items unless they are made for professional use. Different rental areas will have different equipment. So, ask what is provided before getting into any contract.
Insurance and Regulation
A kitchen is prone to cuts, fires and falls. As a business owner, you will be required to show your liability insurance. It is to shield the owner from liability when you are operating in the kitchen. When applying to rent a commercial kitchen you will also be required to provide a general business permit and a food seller license.
Different local governments regulations require certain standards for commercial kitchens. It is vital you visit the kitchen you want to rent to ensure it has met given guidelines like garbage removal and cleaning equipment.
For a startup on an experimental level, renting a kitchen is a good option since it eliminates the risk of you losing the investment you would make on equipment. This lets you concentrate on perfecting your art more.
Finding a kitchen space
Commercial rental kitchens are in our backyards, it could be the school 4 blocks away or the church behind your house. If you know the location you want anywhere in London you can rent a commercial kitchen.