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Workshops offers guidance on starting a food business

Mineral Independent | March 15, 2023 12:00 AM

Let’s say that people rave about your salsa and tell you that you should sell it and you’d make a million bucks. Or your vegetable soup is the highlight of a gathering.

Your recipe for pickles has them clamoring for another jar or at least the formula on how you prepared them. To make your cinnamon rolls is asking for a family feud so this is only done out of state.

That’s considered early market testing and it has planted a seed of, “What if” in your noggin. Well, what if there are professionals who can help with your decision and won’t charge you a penny?

Mission West Community Development Partners serves Lake, Mineral and Sanders counties and the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes. They are a Regional Economic Development Organization established to provide Leadership, Community and Economic Development efforts.

Jan Tusick is the founder and director of the Mission Mountain Food Enterprise Center and has been serving food and agriculture businesses across Montana for over 30 years. Tusick has been an agricultural producer and business owner for the better part of five decades, and has multiple industry accolades, awards and certificates, from a bachelors in agricultural sciences to economic development and entrepreneurial training.

She will guide you through the numerous aspects of developing a food business and use her years of experience to show you how to develop your food product for market.

Topics include target market development. The Food Safety Modernization Act. Food product development. Business Start-Up & Pre-planning. Food Safety Laws and Marketing & Sales.

The 5-hour class, in-person or virtual, will be held on Thursday, March 23 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 407 Main Street SW, Ronan, Montana. This is a free seminar and registration is required. Visit

The seminar is designed exclusively for new food businesses and value-added production enterprises to equip these new entrepreneurs with the necessary tools to take their fledgling concept to the consumer with the highest chances of success.