Many home cooks dream of setting up their own food business and selling directly to the public or a large retailer, but to do so they must first grapple with complex legislation covering all aspects of the business.
Recent well-publicised cases have highlighted the importance of correct packaging and ensuring that any dangers to consumers suffering from allergens are properly highlighted.
Increasingly, producers are selling food online, and a good port of call to ensure you are covering all the bases is the Food Standards Agency.
The potential for liability is the biggest consideration, and along with allergies, the possibility of goods perishing or packaging breaking should also be a matter of concern.
The question of packaging will be a major issue where goods are being delivered by a third party. Increasingly, courier services are playing a major role in food delivery. Major UK cities will provide opportunities for this kind of service. For a same day courier Birmingham offers examples such as those found at http://allaboutfreight.co.uk/same-day-courier-service/same-day-courier-birmingham/.
As well as the importance of robust packaging, where foods have a specific temperature requirement the wrapping will need to be appropriate, whether chilled or heated foods are being delivered.
There is a range of other issues which will come into play when you are choosing the way you package the product. These range from appearance to the most effective way of wrapping, canning or bottling your goods.
The appearance should be eye-catching, whether on your website or on delivery. If you are selling to a retailer, then a barcode will be advisable to increase your options.
Thinking outside the box can help. Although you may not want to invest in the packaging process, sub-contractors such as mobile canning services offer a solution.
Baked goods offer a different challenge. Increasingly, producers are aiming to move away from plastic products. Cellophane is rarely recyclable in the UK, and clients are more likely to be attracted to your goods if you are using paper and cardboard, which is more environmentally friendly.
The net weight of the product and the gross weight including packaging should be on your label as well as a comprehensive list of ingredients. Again, it is crucial to ensure you add a list of any allergens which have been included in the process used to provide the final product.