Product and Process Development

As you build your food business, you will need to reassess and improve your product and how it's processed. This includes the ongoing analysis of ingredients, processing facilities, equipment, permits and licensing, and distribution channels.

The Food in Canada Buyers Guide provides National directories to help identify ingredients, processing equipment, packaging equipment, logistics and transportation companies and technical consulting services. Manitoba Agriculture business development specialists provide more targetted pathfinding services. Contact mbagrifood@gov.mb.ca to get connected.

 

 

Product Development

As you build your food business. You will continue to analyze and improve your product's formulation and scale up production. Manitoba has a valuable network of organizations and facilities to help you develop your food product.

Processing Facilities

As you build your food business, you will need to periodically look at your current processing methods, as your requirements may change over time. Explore other options to ensure your business is running as efficiently as possible.

Community Commercial Kitchens

Renting space in an approved food handling establishment, such as a community commercial kitchen (CCK), can provide you with the space you need to process your product without making a huge capital investment to have your own processing facility.

Co-packers

A co-packer is a company that processes and packages foods for other companies. Using a co-packer can be a cost-effective option if you do not have the time or resources to have your own processing facility. Many co-packers can also offer warehousing and distribution options.

If you have your own processing facility, you can consider offering co-packing services to other companies.

Equipment

The food production cycle requires a wide range of processing equipment. When deciding what equipment you need, consider how your production may change in the future. If you will need to increase capacity and improve efficiency, you may require automated equipment. Consider each stage of the food production cycle to help identify your processing equipment needs.

Permits and Licensing

As you build your business, you will need to continually ensure that your product is safe and complies with relevant federal and provincial regulations, which are determined by the type of product you're selling and where you'll sell it. Expect enforcement officers to conduct inspections to ensure minimum standards and practices are being followed.

Provincially, the permits and licenses you need depend on where your product will be processed and where you'll sell it. The Food Safety Regulations for Marketing a Food Product in Manitoba webinar can help you determine what permits and licenses you will need and who you should contact, Manitoba Agriculture or Manitoba Health.

If you import or export products, whether interprovincially or internationally, you will likely need to follow the Safe Food for Canadians (SFC) regulations. To get an SFC license, you will need to apply to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) with documentation on your process and an explanation of your food safety control points.

Food Safety

Food safety programs are increasingly becoming a customer and regulatory requirement. An overview of food safety programs, resources and information links can be found on the Manitoba Agriculture food safety website. For more information, email the Food Safety and Inspection Branch.

Distribution

As you build your food business, you will need to consider distribution and logistics to move your product from where it's processed to where it will be sold. These logistics include transportation, packaging, inventory, stock control, climate control and documentation. There are several options for getting your product to customers, including direct selling, indirect selling, using a broker or agent, using a wholesaler or distributer, or hiring a merchandiser.

The right distributor can assist you in entering a new market, so it's important you conduct thorough research: identify all potential distributors, evaluate each one to see if they're a good fit for your company and set out clear expectations for your business relationship.

Make Manitoba Agriculture your first point of contact for help as you build your future in food. Business development specialists offer consulting, pathfinding and training that will help you start, manage and grow your food business. Get connected today at mbagrifood@gov.mb.ca.