Thinking about opening a meat cutting service? We tell you what you need to know to get started.
Dynamics of Meat Cutting & Processing Industry
Meat cutting and processing is a very old business concept that shows no signs of fading away anytime soon. Traditionally, meat cutters and butchers have had an import place in the U.S. food supply, properly processing customers' slaughtered livestock and game, and often selling meat products directly to the public.
With the exception of improvements in meat processing technology, the meat cutting business hasn't changed much over the years, largely by design. In general, meat processing customers prefer traditional cuts and old world processes for transforming their meats into sausage, franks and other products.
New entries to the meat cutting industry need to be experienced cutters and possess a firm grasp of traditional processing techniques. If necessary, consider serving as an apprentice under an experienced meat processor or business mentor before launching your own operation.
Profitability Guidelines for Meat Cutting Startups
The path to profitability in meat cutting begins with a cost-effective setup. You'll need a meat cutting facility outfitted with refrigeration units, cutting & processing equipment, and lots of stainless steel. As long as you don't sell meat directly to the public, you don't need a high traffic location, making it easy for many new entrepreneurs to launch startups from their personal residence.
After your setup is complete, labor costs represent the biggest barrier to profitability. You'll need to price your services to stay ahead of labor costs with an additional buffer for other overhead and your profit margin. As you grow, your ability to cost-efficiently employ skilled workers will inevitably carry over into your business's bottom line earnings.
Why You Need an Exit Plan for Your Meat Cutting Service Startup
The startup phase is an exciting time for an entrepreneur. But the startup phase is also the time when you should start thinking about how you will eventually exit your meat cutting business. Believe it or not, the decisions you make now will dramatically impact your options when it comes time to hand your business over to the next owner.
For example, if you plan to sell your meat cutting business on the business-for-sale marketplace, a home-based location is probably out. Instead, you'll want to find a neutral location that can be easily transferred to a new owner.
Exit planning is especially important for meat cutting businesses since many meat cutters plan to pass their business on to the next generation. Without adequate family exit planning, generational transitions can be messy and divisive.
Business Plans 101 for Meat Cutting Business Startups
Startup entrepreneurs slave over the creation of their business plans, investing countless hours in the details of their startup strategy. But have you included any material about your industry?
Industry analyses are standard chapters in meat cutting service business plans and are often required by lenders or investors. In this section, your readers will gain a clearer understanding of your business stacks up against the rest of the industry.
To succeed, you'll need to be careful to avoid common industry analysis mistakes and to accurately represent your startup in an industry context.
Make a Plan for Geographic Expansion
Your initial customer base will be predominantly local. At some point, however, you may want to expand your business.
Because many meat cutting services businesses achieve growth by launching multiple sites and treating each location as a new, local business, we recommend that you build your meat cutting service such that it can be replicated in other locations in the future.
Don't Overlook the Competition
Long before you open a meat cutting service within your community, it's essential to see how strong the competition is. Use the link below to get a list of local competitors in your city. Complete the form by entering your city, state and zip code to get a list of meat cutting services businesses that are close by.
It's important to be aware of what the competition is doing. Take the time to visit the competition to properly assess their strengths and weaknesses.
A Good Source of Advice
If you are interested in starting a meat cutting service, it's a smart move to learn from folks who are already in business. If you think your local competitors will give you advice, you're being overoptimistic. What's in it for them?
Thankfully, an owner of a a meat cutting service in a location that is not competitive to you will be much more likely to talk with you, after they realize you reside far away from them and won't be stealing their local customers. Indeed, many experienced entrepreneurs enjoy offering advice to startup entrepreneurs. Our estimate is that you may have to contact many business owners to find one who is willing to share his wisdom with you.
Want the scoop on finding somebody who runs a meat cutting service in another community?
It's easy. Here's a link you can use to find a mentor outside of your area.
Gaining Access to Meat Cutting Business Ownership
Common sense will tell you that to enter the world of meat cutting service, you'll either need to start a new business or acquire a promising company on the business-for-sale marketplace. There are a lot of benefits of buying a meat cutting service.
The current economic climate is a buyer's market – if you have enough capital to start a meat cutting service, you should have no problem financing the purchase of a meat cutting service that has a solid earnings history and a workable business model.
Explore Franchising Options
You should know that your odds of being a successful business owner are greatly increased if you become a franchisee instead of doing it all on your own.
Before starting a meat cutting service, you would be wise to determine whether franchising might help you avoid common entrepreneurial mistakes.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
These additional resources regarding starting a business may be of interest to you.
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