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Food Business Basics Virtual Workshop for Food Entrepreneurs

Food Business Basics Workshop Screen Shot 2021-05-13 at 16.58.47

Food Business Basics is a unique opportunity for food entrepreneurs to learn critical aspects of entering or growing their business in the prepared food and beverage industry. Attendees will be in front of movers and shakers working in the industry, who will give advice on to how create, commercialize, market and sell in this competitive market.

The Food Innovation Center at Rutgers is having a for early stage entrepreneurs on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 1 -2, 2021 from 9:00am-1:00pm. This is a WEBEX virtual workshop.

On day one, there will be an introduction to the Food Innovation Center at Rutgers University, consumer trends, category overview, brand strategy, tax benefits and breaks for the entrepreneur, packaging trends and protecting your intellectual property. On day two, we’ll have presentations on product development to commercialization, sales strategy, food safety, developing your business plan, an entrepreneurial success story, and a virtual tour of the FIC South will be available to provide further information on our capabilities.


PLUS, get your questions answered and learn from people who are in-the-know! Following the two day event, you will have the opportunity to receive a one-on-one session with the experts directly. Advance sign up will be required.

The Food Innovation Center at Rutgers is excited to announce the Food Business Basics Workshop keynote speaker as Linda M. Doherty, President & CEO of the New Jersey Food Council (NJFC), a Trenton-based business trade association representing supermarkets, convenience stores and the food distribution industry in the Garden State. NJFC represents some of the largest and finest employers in NJ, with a $136 billion economy feeding almost nine million New Jerseyans a day. Ms. Doherty is the fifth and longest serving NJFC President in its 52-year history.

Hot Panel Discussions & Panelists (as of 05.07.2021) will include:

Day 1 (Tuesday)

Nolan Lewin, Acting Executive Director & Director of Operations, Food Innovation Center at Rutgers

Welcome & Introduction to Food Innovation Center: Team, Services, Capabilities, Successes

Linda Doherty, President & CEO, New Jersey Food Council

Keynote Speaker

Joyce Friedberg, Marketing Research Specialist, Food Innovation Center at Rutgers

Consumer Trends & Topline Category Review

Timothy Rankins, Senior Tax Manager, EisnerAmper; Dave Gill, Partner, Haefele Flanagan

Tax Breaks and Benefits for Small Businesses

Break 15min

Lisa Kent, Founder & President, The Luminations Group

Positioning Your Product and Brand for Success

Danielle DeFilippis, Esq., Norris McLaughlin P.A. Attorneys at Law

The Legal Aspect Protecting your Brand: IP, Trademarks, Trademark Registration Process

Day 2 (Wednesday)

Julie Elmer, Associate Director, Food Technology, Food Innovation Center at Rutgers

From Bench to Commercialization - Product Development and Operations

Craig Peck, Senior Manager, Business Development, Food Innovation Center at Rutgers

Developing your Businesses Sales Strategy: Distributor vs. Direct Channels, Online Sales Channels

Mellonie O’Neill, Senior Manager – QA Compliance and Training, Food Innovation Center at Rutgers

Trends in Food Safety & Requirements (for an additional fee, multiple certificate classes are offered)

Break 15min

Bob Palumbo, Regional Director, NJ Small Business Development Centers (NJSBDC)

Developing Your Business Plan – Elements, Financial (Balance Sheet, Cash Flow Statement, Profit & Loss), Monitor & Control (KPIs, Measurement)
Vista Hermosa
Entrepreneurial Success Story, Food Innovation Center at Rutgers

Nolan Lewin, Acting Executive Director & Director of Operations

Virtual tour of Food Innovation Center at Rutgers University


Break 15min

11:30am – 1:00pm Presentations & Discussions

Day 2
9:00am – 10:30 Presentations & Discussions
Break 15min
10:45am – 12:00pm Presentations & Discussions
12:00pm – 12:45pm Virtual tour of Food Innovation Center at Rutgers University

Registration fee: $300 per person registration fee
To learn more about the workshop, contact us by email at