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Back to Business: Recovery & Growth for the Food Industry

Back to Business

Back to Business: Recovery & Growth for the Food Industry

Recovery & Growth for the Food Industry is a program that offers food, beverage, and agricultural businesses training and counseling services to provide the knowledge and skills necessary to weather the COVID-19 economic and public health crisis. Western Pennsylvania's food and farm businesses are integral to the region's economy, providing meaningful jobs and supplying the food our area needs. Chatham's Center for Women's Entrepreneurship (CWE) and the Center for Regional Agriculture and Food Transformation (CRAFT) will empower food business owners to excel in the changing economy, both now and into the future.

The program will offer in-depth training webinars, a "Pandemic Pivot Speaker Series," and one-on-one business counseling with subject matter experts. Training webinars will cover topics as diverse and engaging as Marketing Your Business to Maximize Customer Engagement, Food Photography & Styling, How & Where to Cook Safely, Social Media, Public Relations, Web Design, Food Labeling, Packaging & Distributions, Accessing Capital, Business Resiliency, COVID-19 Mitigation Best Practices, SWOT Analyses, and ServSafe Certification. The "Pandemic Pivot Speaker Series" will showcase how time-tested food, farm, service, and beverage entrepreneurs have survived, evolved, and continue striving for growth during this challenging time. Business counseling will be available in Brand Analysis, Bringing a Food Product to Market, Manufacturing Small Batch Food Products, Food Labeling and Nutrition Requirements, Human Resources, Digital Marketing, Legal, Accounting, Access to Funding, and Diversity Certification.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the Hillman Family Foundation.

Upcoming Events

  • Sep

    Food Start Up Success - HYBRID (in-person & online class)

    05:30 PM - 07:30 PM
    Fee: $45 General Admission.
    Free to CWE Members, Chatham Students, Veterans and Active-Duty Service Members
    Location: Online & Chatham Eastside - 6585 Penn Ave Pittsburgh PA 15206

    Do you have a great idea for a food business and don’t know how to turn your dream into a reality? This 6-week program will help any aspiring food business owner begin their business journey. Topics include how to formally start your business, marketing and branding, how to distribute and sell your food product and more. This course is ideal for anyone thinking about starting a restaurant, catering company, food product, or food service (meal planning, nutrition, etc.) business.

    This 6-week program will be offered as a hybrid: the first and last sessions (September 27 and November 1) would be in-person at Chatham Eastside (6585 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15206), and the rest of sessions would be online via Zoom. The program will be offered at a reduced rate of $45. The program is capped at 25 participants. Required: Zoom capable device and internet access to participate.

    Nicolette Spudic, Food Innovation Lab Manger | CRAFT … more info

  • Oct

    Webinar: Storytelling - A Marketing Strategy For Food Businesses

    02:00 PM - 03:00 PM
    Fee: Free
    Location: Online - Zoom

    Storytelling is a content marketing strategy focused on sharing the story of a business, its products, and services. Storytelling is an informative and personal way to educate consumers on why your business is worth their interest. The webinar will provide actionable strategies for using storytelling in digital marketing to increase engagement and loyalty, attract new customers, and gain a competitive advantage.Through a series of real-world examples from food businesses, you will learn about the science of storytelling, its impacts on consumer behavior, its benefits within the food business environment, and how to craft an authentic story for your restaurant, food product, or agriculture business.

    Presenter: Martina DiFolco, Food Innovation Lab Coordinator | CRAFT

    Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the Hillman Family Foundation

    To register for the Webinar, < … more info

  • Nov

    Webinar: Fall Business Planning Bootcamp for the Food Industry

    5:30 PM - 8:30 PM
    Fee: $25 General Admission.
    $15 for CWE Members, Chatham Students, Veterans, and Active Duty Service Members.
    The fee includes a 30-day license to LivePlan
    Location: Online - Zoom

    This 3-hour bootcamp introduces skills & specific steps to build a business plan for the food industry.

    A solid business plan is a foundational piece to a successful business, regardless of where you are in the business lifecycle. If you are seeking to rebuild & reboot your business from the economic impact of COVID-19 or seeking to navigate the new economy as a startup, a business plan is a tool you’ll want in your toolbox. Building a plan identifies specific action steps to move a business forward, creates short-and long-term strategies, and may uncover gaps that should be bridged to reach your business objectives.

    In this bootcamp, the content is delivered in bite-sized pieces to introduce the major components for writing a business plan through an interactive approach and live Q&A. Best practices for business planning include identifying the right content, research, and presentation format. We will introduce techniques for addressing and planning … more info