SUCCESS has already come to some who started operating their own businesses as Cottage Food Operations in San Diego County. Bridget Doyle knew people loved her white chocolate fudge—they told her all the time at the hospital where she volunteered. She got a reputation as the “Fudge Lady.” But when they offered to buy it, she began doing some research and discovered the California Cottage Food law. That made everything possible because otherwise, it was just too expensive to rent a kitchen and produce it commercially!
When people start asking to pay for your food, it’s a good time to consider a business! Her first challenge was learning about California’s Cottage Food (or Homemade Food) Law, AB1616 which took effect Jan. 1, 2013. The next challenge was working out the labels and getting all the correct information on them. But once approved, she faced the question every budding entrepreneur faces – how and where to get customers? Bridget turned to social media and using a Facebook page for her business, asked people where they had bought fudge in retail settings. She got a lead to Major Market grocery store in Escondido. Bridget called and learned that they had lost their fudge vendor three years earlier. Hopeful, she got busy in the kitchen making a batch of fudge, packed it up, and went to market.
Bridget met with the store manager, offered samples of her fudge and simply said, “I am starting up a fudge company. Would you be interested in selling my fudge at your store?” And so began her official foray into business. Major Markets in Escondido and Fallbrook now carry four flavors of Bridget Rose Delights’ fudge: white chocolate, peanut butter, milk chocolate, and milk chocolate with walnuts. And she’s recently expanded to Rockin’ Jenny’s Italian Sub shop for those who also want a sweet treat with their sandwich. Just shows that you need to explore options, and think creatively, when looking for additional markets. Bridget’s advice on getting into a store or market? “Make sure you make the right contacts and give samples of your product.”
If you have had some success pioneering your CFO business in San Diego County, let us know! We’d love to hear about it and possibly feature you and your creations, too.