I don't know about you, but every time I hear that statement I feel obligated to say... to defeat the Huns! That's the 90s kid in me I suppose but in all seriousness we are getting down to business. More like starting a business! Through many discussions, prayers, and panic attacks, I have finally pulled the trigger on opening up a meat business. I have been working on getting everything together since shortly after I decided to step away from my job at the hog farm in January. In my mind, its now or never!
There are many steps to take to accomplish this and legal hoops to jump through. But I wanted to do everything on the up and up. It's just the right way!
Apply and be approved for a LLC. I went through a lawyer to get this step done. I know there are many online options (like LegalZoom) but decided that if I ever do need legal help, I already have an established relationship then. So thank you Hoesch and VanderPloeg P.L.C here in Zeeland for answering all of my questions and helping me along the way!
Shamrock Meats, LLC was born!
Open up that small business bank account! When you are ready and able to open an account, the business will be assigned an EIN (Employer Identification Number) number from the IRS for tax purposes, which you will take with you to the bank along with your LLC articles of operation as well as first consent resolutions. Then it's about choosing what works for you! Thankfully we are surrounded by many banking systems in this town. Sifting through the options to see what works best for the business... things like minimum balance, monthly fee structures, number of free transactions, the opportunity for online banking.
Buy that freezer. This has taken me what seems like the longest to decide on. I mean it has to hold valuable product! It better be a good one. I have high standards. I went with a Frigidaire chest freezer to start with. They are more energy efficient and I feel like i can trust that seal a little better than an upright freezer. Yes, they can be more challenging to search and find things in, but I'll work on a system of organizing. I have a 20cuft freezer in my garage. This freezer also locks. Win. Gotta keep that riffraff out. A new thing, at least new to me, is this freezer has castors on it for easy moving and cleaning. Also a win for me.
Acquire my food warehouse license. In the state of Michigan, a food warehouse is defined by: "A food establishment that stores or distributes prepackaged food. This may include a small or large food warehouse, distribution center, transfer station, public cold storage facility, or reclamation center." That's exactly what I will be! All meats will be prepackaged under USDA guidelines at a processor nearby and sold by yours truly. To get this license, my freezer space has to be inspected by the local USDA official.
Liability insurance! Just incase... you never know what can happen so just to cover your butt incase, adding a liability policy that would go with your current insurance to offer a little more protection.
Product acquisition to fill that freezer! Since it's been quite a long time since I last posted anything, I have a plan.
Build that brand and that market! This is in the works...
Shamrock Meats, LLC will offer that wonderful Dexter beef to the area!
Nothing but the best. To achieve this, I have purchased extra stock to fulfill the custom orders as well as put meat in that retail freezer. But, I can't just have beef can I? I feel like that pigeon holes me too much. So to reach a broader audience, I have bought my first batch of pigs
and also plan to offer homegrown lamb and possibly goat as well. Why not? We have the stock and the USDA processing close by and not much compares to grilled lamb chops!
I am aware of the trials that can come with a business like this. I have watched from the sideline for long enough. It's time for me to step out and show the area what I have to offer.