Over the past year, what is it that we have all yearned for and ordered as take out so many times to bring comfort to us in times when we were too tired and too stressed?
What have we bought gift cards for, ordered or donated to give to those on the front lines taking care of us all? What industry has been one of the hardest hit, yet still are persevering in anyway possible due to the dedication of their repeat customers and their passion for what they do. Where is it that we can’t wait to go visit again and partake in their passion to bring comfort and joy to us all after such an unprecedented year?
The food industry has been devastated during the course of the pandemic. Some have made it through, and some decided to cut their losses and close their doors. I personally had the opportunity to work with so many local and culturally diverse entrepreneurs unafraid of pursuing the dream of bringing their cuisine to our community. Though the industry outlook was uncertain, and many difficult discussions took place, their passion and their 'why' far outweighed their apprehension.
I had the privilege to work with most of the stall owners at Salt City Market, a unique in-the-area food hall featuring culturally diverse cuisine, desserts, beverages and more. I saw these Foodpreneurs grow from their original concept development, to take out only pop-ups in 'With Love' on the Northside of Syracuse (when dine in was shut down), to teaching them what was necessary to obtain funding for their final stall concept in Downtown Syracuse. When asked about their experience of working with the Onondaga SBDC on their venture, here is what they said:
Due to the unwavering desire and interest we are seeing from either potential or existing food industry business owners, we have created a Food Industry Webinar Series to meet those needs and interest within our community. The Onondaga SBDC is partnering with Collin Townsend, a food industry expert that was also a Technical Assistant on the Salt City Market project with Keyona Kelly, Certified Business Advisor for the Onondaga SBDC. Collin will provide pertinent information specific to the food industry, as well as the business components, in a series of 6 virtual webinars.
Article published in the 'The Central New York Business Journal' on May 3, 2021
Article by Keyona Kelly, Certified Business Advisor at the Small Business Development Center located at Onondaga Community College. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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