…I figured the best and least expensive way to sell ketchup would be to open an online store. I mean, malls are closing, “brick & mortar” stores are increasingly going away, and even retail workers are losing jobs, plus every other commercial touts how easy it is to open your own online store - commerce baby! (Wix, Squarespace, Shopify, on, and on). So that’s what I decided I’d do. Simple, right? Welllll. Not so fast.
I knew I’d need some guidance on how to start so given that I was going to sell food, I knew I probably would need to deal with my state’s Department of Health so I figured that’d be a good first step on my way to being self-employed! So, I called them to find out how to get a license to sell ketchup. “Is your kitchen certified? Is your company registered with the Secretary of State? Do you have your EIN and your Process Approval Letter? And you’ll need a process approval letter, operational plan, HACCP and Recall Plans…”
Waaa Waaa? Yea. Wow. So I’ll fast forward to today as I write this post two months later I’ll spare you all the details of what it took to do it but, finally, I now have my Process Approval Letter and all the other stuff (and more) that I learned I needed before I could even ask someone to buy a bottle of Chumley’s Natural Ketchup. And now I’m shaking my fist in the air as I try to figure out how the HECK to “easily create an online commerce site”. IT”S NOT. I’ll be the first to admit I really dislike technology - well, not that I dislike it, I just don’t want it to interfere in what I’m trying to GET DONE. And it is. The problem is, is it’s designed by people who design web sites others will use, not by people who actually USE the web sites, you know? People like, oh, I don’t know…people like, ME?!”
So, after all this, guess where I’m at… I am now ready to apply for a license with the State to sell Chumley’s Natural Ketchup. That’s right, I’m just at the beginning and it took me all summer to get to the point I thought I’d be at when I made that call to the Department of Health! That’s okay though, cuz I’m on my way! I’ll update you soon with how I found out about what all this “commercial kitchen” stuff is about. Check in again and we’ll ketchup.