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FRANKENMUTH, MI – The Frankenmuth Farmers Market is proud to officially introduce one of its newly developed operations, the Artisans Kitchen.  Scheduled to open in July, this shared-use incubator kitchen will be available for rent by area entrepreneurs to produce commercially sellable foods.  With many users already booked, Kitchen Manager Jenny Miller is accepting additional tenants to schedule into the use of this 24/7 facility.  She can be reached at ffmikitchen@gmail.com or (989) 325-0391.  As a part of the Frankenmuth Farmers Market campus, the Kitchen is the northern-most operation in the Great Lakes Bay Region and the only one in the northeastern half of the Lower Peninsula, thereby serving a huge geographical radius.

The Artisans Kitchen offers those interested in starting a food-based business the low-risk opportunity to do so.  Instead of having to raise capital to invest in their own building, equipment and utilities, people with great products or recipes can test them out in a smaller scale or even as a larger, full-time regular operation at the Kitchen.  The facility will be fully certified and licensed to create food products for commercial sale.  These goods can then be sold at the Farmers Market, its Farm Store, online, and at any retail level.  “Jumping into starting a food-based business on your own requires huge risk and commitment without a facility or assistance.  As a type of business incubator, the Kitchen is here to help you turn that big, risky jump into small, safe and easy steps as we guide you along the way.”  In addition to encouraging and enabling entrepreneurialism, the Kitchen at the same time will increase the use of local foods grown by area farmers and producers, upping the economic impact of the Market significantly.

The Artisans Kitchen will be fully suited with all standard equipment, machinery, utensils, stoves, freezer, refrigerators, and even wood-fired brick ovens.  Staff will assist users with state requirements, food safety, recipe scaling, processing, licensing, labeling, and nutritional analysis needs.  As a business incubator, staff will also connect users with opportunities for education on business development, state certification, liability insurance, marketing, and more.

Any type of food, pre-packaged, ready-to-eat, shelf-stable, or even restaurant-service ready items, can be produced in the Kitchen.  Examples of foods that could be prepared are jams, salsas, sauces, spice mixes, pickled produce, cheese, yogurt, ice cream, breads, pastries, desserts, baking kits, granola, jerky, soups, salads, sandwiches, ready-to-bake pizzas, and fresh pasta.  Aside from its main function of commercial cooking to produce value-added items, the Kitchen will also be available for alternative uses such as cooking classes, chef demonstrations, culinary education, catering production, cooking parties and other events.  Banquet and other facility space lie within the same building, adjacent to the Kitchen in the Market’s Gathering Barn.  Rental of the Kitchen starts at $15/hour.  Tenants have already begun reserving use of the Kitchen.  Other interested individuals or groups should make contact as soon as possible to secure their bookings.

The Frankenmuth Farmers Market, a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to providing and promoting the values of local food and products, is in its 12th season of operation.  The Market is evolving this year through the $2.2 million creation of the Market Pavilion and Building which will hold the Artisans Kitchen, Gathering Barn, Farm Store, and more.  The Market season opens May 14.

To learn more, please visit www.frankenmuthfarmersmarket.org or the Market’s Facebook page.

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