North Coast SBDCEureka and Crescent City California

Food Makers & Sellers

Want to earn a living as a Food Maker or Seller?

APPLY TODAY - Ask for the Flight Application and link to the participant needs survey

The North Coast Small Business Development Center is offering a special program for Food Makers and Sellers on the North Coast to enhance their business skills. This "Food as a Business" cohort learning program will run from August through November 2017, in partnership with Humboldt Made. We have done this program several times and response has always been very positive. 

  • Download this flyer
  • Call (707) 445-9720 or stop by our offices at 520 E Street, Eureka to ask questions or fill out your application in person.

Is This for Me? 

Do you wish you could earn a living or increase your income from your food products? Does your household live with a low-to-moderate income? If you answer yes to both of these, then you may be eligible.

Ready to Apply?

Step (1) YOU APPLY. Complete the Online Request for Services, Flight Application, and Income Eligibility forms below and email them to flights@northcoastsbdc.org or bring/mail them to North Coast SBDC Flights Program, 520 E Street, Eureka, CA 95501 We will review applications on a rolling basis so get them in early and you'll get an answer quicker. If you need to apply late, please email flights@northcoastsbdc.org asap

Download electronic versions here or call (707) 445-9720 x210 / email flights@northcoastsbdc.org to have the application emailed to you.

  • Sign up online as a client * Be sure to specify you’re a Food Flight candidate. This gets you into the system so you can access help no matter what.
  • Flight Program Application * Download, fill out thoughtfully, and return by email, mail or in person.
  • Income Eligibility Form * This income form must be filled out completely or we cannot process it. All information is kept confidential. Call us any time if you need help with the questions.

Step (2) WE CONFIRM YOUR INCOME ELIGIBILITY. You will get an email promptly confirming that we received your application and saying whether you are income eligible for this program. 

Step (3) WE CONFIRM YOUR FLIGHT ELIGIBILITY. You will get a phone call and an email after your application has been reviewed letting you know whether it's time to set up your intake interview with a business advisor. That conversation will allow us to figure out whether this Food as a Business flight is the right program for your needs, or if our other services will suit you better. If you are a fit for this cohort, we will assign you your own business coach who will talk in depth with you about your hopes, needs, and goals. If you are a fit for the cohort but you don't qualify for the full scholarship you can decide then if you want to pay out of pocket, or you can choose to have business advising only, which is always no-cost.

The Timeline

June 6: First Information Session  
June 27: Application Deadline
Before August : Participants have their first meeting with a business advisor (phone or in-person)
August 1: Program kicks off
November 18: Program ends

The Program

This Food as a Business flight provides three benefits: one-on-one business advising, team building with others in the cohort, and workshops. 

Business Advising: participants are required to complete 10 or more hours of business advising. This is the most important part of any SBDC program--this is where you get individualized, confidential coaching from an experienced advisor. 

Team Building: there will be many opportunities for members of the cohort to share advice, cheer each other on, and provide feedback. Past participants tell us these relationships often last long past the end of the Flight program.

Workshops: Some workshops are required, and others are optional. See details below.

The Workshops

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

  • Workshop dates will be updated when our instructors confirm availability, but we try to hold them all on a work day starting at 5:30 pm.
  • Workshop location is Prosperity Center Conference Room, 520 E Street, Eureka unless otherwise specified.
  • If you are accepted into the Flight but are not income eligible for the full scholarship, you can pick and choose the workshops you wish to participate in. Prices are indicated below.
  • The Required vs Optional Sessions below apply to full scholarship participants. Participants who are paying out of pocket can select the workshops they need and have the budget for.
  • You can take the Business Basics workshops whenever you like from July through November, however below is the recommended order/flow. 

REQUIRED WORKSHOPS:

Welcome & Kick-off | Tuesday, August 1, 5:30 to 7:30 pm

Orientation & program logistics. Team building. Defining your brand. Setting goals and starting your Benefits Analysis of your Food Product. (2 hours, $100) 

Business Basics: Plan for SuccessAugust 16, September 20, October 18, November 15

Click on a date above to register for that workshop. (2 hours, $30)

Time and Money Management for Food Makers | Thursday, August 10, 5:30 to 8:00pm

Define financial success today and in the long-term. Separate personal vs business finances. Attitude and myth-busting. Time is money; so manage both. (2.5 hours, $125)  

Marketing and Branding your Food Product | Thursday, August 31, 5:30 to 7:30pm 

Market and brand your food product. Create a demo package. Analyze how local food makers use social media. (2 hours, $100) 

Business Basics: Get Your Books in OrderAugust 2, September 6, October 4, November 1

Click on a date above to register for that workshop. (2 hours, $30)

Business Basics: Think Like a Marketer | August 8, September 11, October 9, November 9

Click on a date above to register for that workshop. (2 hours, $30)

Regulation & Liabilities for the Food Industry | Thursday, September 28, 5:30 to 8:00pm 

Learn about food regulation and permits from the experts of our area. (2.5 hours, $125) 

Business Basics: Get Your Finances in OrderAugust 23, September 27, October 25

Click on a date above to register for that workshop. (2 hours, $30) 

Pricing, Sales and Distribution | Thursday, October 19, 5:30 to 7:30pm

How to price your food by considering all your ingredients and expenses. Distribution channels and more. (2 hours, $100) 

Meet the Rock Stars of the Industry and Q & A | Tuesday, October 24, 5:30 to 8pm

Successful artists talk about their careers, give advice about the industry,selling outside of Humboldt County, etc. This workshop will be held at the Clarke Museum.  

Finale: Sampling of delicous local products from our Food Flight participants | Saturday, November 4, 6 to 9pm

OPTIONAL WORKSHOPS:

Resources for Entrepreneurs/Makers | Thursday, September 21, 5:30 to 7:30pm

When and how to use debt, crowdfunding, and more. (2 hours, $100) 

Accounting on the Cloud | Tuesday, October 3, 5:30 to 7:30pm

What is cloud accounting, why use the cloud, and what are your software options? How do you decide? Learn about cloud accounting and get a tour of leading free and paid cloud accounting service providers. (2 hours, $100) 

Photograpy for e-commerce | Thursday, October 26, 5:30 to 7:30pm

Learn how to present and photograph your pieces for highest impact. Hands-on. Led by respected local professional photographer. (2 hours, $100) 

Marketing & Selling Your Product Online | Monday, October 30, 5:30 to 7:30pm

Learn the pros and cons of selling your products online via E-Bay or Amazon. Learn the basics of using social media to drive customers to buy online. Instructor Bill Prescott who advises SBDC clients on e-commerce and leads digital marketing and sales for Sun Valley Flower Farms. (2 hours, $100) 

Strategic eMarketing with Social Media | Monday, November 13, 5:30 to 7:30pm 

Reach more buyers, use social media resources and time wisely. (2 hours, $100) 

Build your e-commerce web site | Saturday, November 18, 10:00am to 2:00pm

Hands-on step by step workshop led by a seasoned web developer who likes to teach what he knows. You finish having built the first version of your own free Squarespace web site. Held at Humboldt State University computer lab. (4 hours, $200) 

Apply Now

It all starts here. Complete the application and submit your request. A member of the SBDC will follow up with you and help you achieve your small business goals -- at no cost to you.
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Funded in part through cooperative agreements with the U.S. Small Business Administration, the California Governors Office for Business and Economic Development, and other private and public partners;  and nationally accredited by the association of SBDCs.