Punkindoodle Foods, LLC
Nebraska Manufacturing Extension Partnership
I took the Recipe to Reality seminar and knew that The Food Processing Center was very knowledgeable and would be an incredible guide for me in my quest to bring my salsa to market. It is such a tried and true program, and it helped me every step of the way to do things thoroughly, correctly, and safely. I cannot imagine starting a small business without the encouragement and expertise that is provided through this amazing program.
Cindi Weiss, Founder & Owner
Home Canning Leads to New Food Business
Started in 2010, Punkindoodle Foods, LLC is a food company based in Lincoln, NE. The business is owned and operated by Cindi Weiss. The company's line of Holy Tamole Salsas can be found in grocery stores in eastern Nebraska as well as online at www.holytamole.com.
While living in Iowa many years ago, a friend introduced Cindi Weiss to homemade salsa. Weiss continued to experiment with salsa while raising four children and operating a medical practice with her husband. Weiss' salsa making continued as a hobby for a number of years until opportunity presented itself and the timing was right to launch her food venture.
When her youngest child was heading off to college, Weiss decided the time was right to explore starting a food business. While at the State Fair that year, she picked up a brochure for The Food Processing Center' s Food Entrepreneur Assistance Program (FEAP). Weiss signed up and attended The Food Processing Center's "From Recipe to Reality" one-day workshop, covering the basic aspects of starting a food business; providing an overview of the marketing, business, and technical aspects that need to be taken into consideration. Following the seminar, Weiss had a personal consultation with FEAP Manager and Food Scientist. Making the decision to move forward with her food enterprise, Weiss continued into the next phase of FEAP, "From Product to Profit", which consisted of one-on-one technical and business development assistance over an extended period of time to create a market-ready product. Assistance was received in designing the product label in compliance with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations, developing marketing materials, customizing the recipe formulations for commercial production, and various other related services. Additionally, The Food Processing Center conducted a search to locate a contract manufacturer for the product. When Weiss graduated from FEAP, she began making sales calls on area grocery stores in eastern Nebraska and started her business.
$50,000 start-up capital investment
$12,000 new sales