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Specialty foods workshop offered

A workshop series on starting and operating a specialty food business will be offered in Fairbanks and Kodiak and at videoconference sites around the state.

Videoconference locations include Palmer, Anchorage, Soldotna, Juneau and Petersburg. The University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service and Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program will host the workshop, which will meet four Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Feb. 15 to March 8.

The instructors are Quentin Fong, seafood marketing specialist for the Marine Advisory Program; Kate Idzorek, Extension food technician; and seafood scientist Brennan Smith of the Kodiak Seafood and Marine Science Center.

Idzorek said the workshop is geared to individuals who are interested in selling specialty foods at farmers markets and other events, wholesale or through food trucks. She said specialty foods are manufactured in low volume from high-quality ingredients. They include products like jams and jellies made from Alaska berries or handmade chocolates.

Participants will learn how to evaluate their business idea and gain an understanding of what a bank may want to see if they apply for a loan. Other topics will include marketing, pricing and promoting products, developing a business plan, creating nutrition fact labels and making sure facilities meet health and safety guidelines.

The workshop fee is $40 and preregistration is required. Register online at http://bit.ly/ces-workshops.

A flier with more information about the workshop and locations is linked at www.uaf.edu/ces or www.marineadvisory.org.

For more information, contact Idzorek at 474-5391 or kjidzorek@alaska.edu.

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