September 12th, 2016

Food for Profit Class in Washington County (10/20)

by Amy Crone

Have you ever been told that your favorite homemade bread, or salsa, is “good enough to sell?” Do you have additional fruit or vegetables from your farm or home garden that you would like to make into a commercial product?

Food for Profit is a one-day workshop designed to help you work through the maze of local and state regulations, food safety issues, and business management concepts that all must be considered in setting up a commercial food business.  The course will be held at the University of Maryland Extension-Washington County, 7303 Sharpsburg Pike, Boonsboro, MD 21713 on Thursday, October 20, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  This session of Penn State Extension’s popular course has been specifically adapted to Maryland’s food production regulations, food entrepreneurial resources, and marketing opportunities.


Food for Profit will take you step-by-step through the entrepreneurial process.  It will provide you with the information and skills to assess if your idea will be something that will sell at a profit.  Conducting a feasibility study (to see if yours is a good business idea), performing marketing research, and beginning to draft a business plan are a few of the concrete tools taught by certified instructors and business experts.  By attending this class, you can learn how to evaluate the opportunities on paper before you look for funding or take action (saving money and time).

Food for Profit
 will meet from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm., on October 20, 2016 at the University of Maryland Extension-Washington County, 7303 Sharpsburg Pike, Boonsboro, MD 21713.  The tuition cost of $45 per person which includes all materials and lunch.

Registration is through the University of Maryland Extension Eventbrite on-line system at https://foodforprofit-washco.eventbrite.comor by calling 301-432-2767 ext. 301.  For further information about workshop content, contact Ginger S. Myers, University of Maryland Extension Specialist at, 301-432-2767 ext.338.  Pre-payment and registration are required for this workshop.

The University of Maryland Extension programs are open to all and will not discriminate against anyone because of race, age, sex, color, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry, or national origin, marital status, genetic information, or political affiliation, or gender identity and expression.

Los programas del Colegio de Agricultura y Recursos Naturales de la Universidad de Maryland están abiertos a todos y no discriminará contra nadie debido a raza, edad, sexo, color, orientación sexual, discapacidad física o mental, religión, descendencia, origen nacional, estatus matrimonial, información genética, afiliación política, o identificación y expresión de género.


Guiding food entrepreneurs through the initial steps to start a business, this class combines educational presentations, guest speakers and a highly interactive learning environment to address:

    • Welcome & Introductions
    • Rewards and Challenges of Food Business​ 
      ​The challenges and advantages of owning a food related business.
    • Legally Speaking 
      Learn the role that DHMH will have in your venture—a chance to talk about licensure and the inspection process.
    • Safe Food Handling
      How extra attention paid at a few specific points in your operation will save time for you, and improve the quality of your product.
    • Developing a Game Plan
      A business idea must be doable, marketable, and profitable. Your business plan will provide a forecast about the feasibility of your venture.
    • Start-up Support
      Business resources
    • Niche Marketing (Finding a Niche) 
      Learn to accurately target your first and best customer; using the four P’s of price, product, placement, and promotion.
    • Packaging your Product 
      How to package, selecting functional containers that are pleasing to the consumer eye. Food labeling requirements are also covered.
    • Pricing your Product 
      A discussion of good pricing formulas and strategies—and a chance to practice using the tools that ensure the price that you arrive at is right
    • Share Your Next Steps! & General Questions (a short participant survey)
About the Author Amy Crone Amy Crone

Amy’s passion for food starting in her aunt & uncle’s garden, a lovely log cabin by a NH lake where she first learned to preserve and pickle. She has always wanted to help people, and completed her degrees in international development in hopes of combining this interest with her love of travel. After working in the field of international development, then in federal government, then in a think tank, and then in state government, Amy decided that she wanted to explore explore her entrepreneurial interests. These included: starting a nonprofit (MDFMA), developing a national technology solution to provide farmers market and farmers access to accepting SNAP, building several websites, and becoming a Board member in local organizations. She is happy to be able to follow her passion of improving local food systems and the health of all Marylanders by getting them to buy more fresh local food at Maryland farmers markets. Amy’s other main interests are her husband & 2 children, Crossfitting, and traveling to any location that has interesting and delicious ~preferably local~ food.