Boulder Cookie is an amazing twist on an old classic. I am so excited to have created a cookie that truly tastes like a nostalgic cookie and not a protein bar or worse, cardboard! My goal when creating my recipes was to have consumers eat my cookies and not feel deprived, in fact not even be able to tell there is grain missing. After perfecting the flavors (Classic Chocolate Chip, Double Chocolate and Cranberry White Chocolate Chip) I started out out by selling cookies to my dinner clients and the feedback has been nothing but positive with consistent weekly repeat business. Next we started selling to the busiest coffee shop in Boulder where they couldn't keep them on the shelves. Baristas would share with me stories of people coming back just for cookies and the excitement from customers who had never before been able to enjoy a treat with their coffee because there were no grain free or vegan treats available. Price point and taste test done!
So, what's next? Well, I am currently in a small licensed and insured kitchen but I need to move to an actual bakery with ovens that can produce large batches. This would still be a co-op kitchen, no need for capital equipment expenses at this point! I also need a kitchen that has a packaging machine that can individually wrap and seal the cookies. This will require a minimum lease commitment. There will have to be package design as well. Next up labels, with die cut plates created for the labels that will adorn our packaged cookies along with UPC code generation. The info on that label requires $ as well, from nutritional analysis, to best by date, water table research, etc. all conducted by a food scientist. Reaching $7,500 would allow us to obtain all of these things and thus be able to approach local grocery stores and regional Whole Foods to ask for some shelf space. Of course sampling and in store presence will be critical when we first hit the shelves. I am fully committed to being visible and finding brand ambassadors from the get go. Once customers taste our cookies they will be blown away!
$10,000: Tents and signage for local field marketing and farmer's markets, exhibitor fees to local events to build brand awareness and sampling.
$15,000: Build event sponsorship brand activation strategy. Target events to be 2014 BolderBoulder 10K, Venus De Miles Bike Ride and Boulder Ironman Triathalon. Ability to purchase ingredients in bulk/pallets driving down the cost of goods.
$20,000: Exhibitor at Natural Foods Expo West, the largest natural foods show in the U.S. in Spring 2014. Ability to grow brand nationally and meet buyers for all natural food chains.
Risks and challenges
One of my challenges is in extending shelf life of my product. Without getting too technical I believe what I use to sweeten my cookie will extend life, yet I can't determine this until the food science study is completed on my samples. I am ready to use healthy alternative sweeteners if necessary.
Another challenge I may have is in wholesale costs and trying to drive down my cost of goods early on before I have the capital to invest in bulk ordering. My ingredients are high quality and come with a premium price. I may need to invest some funds towards bulk ordering if my wholesale margins demand it.
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