Last Saturday was a great opening day for See Spot Bake at the Gettysburg Farmers Market. It was a lot of fun, I got to talk with a ton of people, and I sold a surprising number of dog treats! I was offering five different varieties of treats, and I completely sold out of two varieties by the end of the market! (Peanut Butter Cookies and Liver Treats, in case you were wondering.) You live and learn, as they say, so of course there are a few things that I’d like to improve upon for next week, but overall the day was a success.
A cool new development in my business plan is that after the market each week I will be donating any unsold See Spot Bake dog treats to the Adams County SPCA. I’m super excited to have this opportunity to support my local SPCA in an ongoing way and to give the animals at the shelter some sweet treats!
My faithful readers may have noticed that lately my blogging has slowed down to just one post a week. This is mostly due to the fact that I’ve been super busy getting prepared to open my very own dog treat business. Starting this Saturday, June 22 you will be able to buy See Spot Bake dog treats at the Gettysburg Farmers Market! It has been a years-long process for me to gather up the courage, initiative, and resources to actually make this dream a reality, and I’m unbelievably excited to be open for business.
When I started the process of getting set up as a legitimate business, I had no idea how much red tape there would be to cut through. Each state has different regulations, but here are the steps that I needed to take before doing business in the state of Pennsylvania:
-Have each individual dog treat recipe tested by a laboratory. (This one is actually a federal law.)
-Register for a commercial feed license. Selling homemade dog treats is considered the same as selling “commercial animal feed,” so you have to be licensed with the Department of Agriculture.
-Apply for a “Fictitious Name Registration” with the Department of State. This is essential if you’re “doing business as” or selling under any name other than your own legal name.
-Register for a Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) with the IRS.
-Register for a sales tax identification number with the IRS, because dog food/treats are considered taxable goods.
-Get general liability insurance for the business. (This is not a law but was required by my farmers market association and is definitely a good idea.)
There were a lot of forms to fill out and a few weeks of waiting for everything to be processed, but now I’m finally able to focus on the fun part: baking delicious dog treats! I’ll be selling 5 different types of treats to start out, and I’m hoping to expand my menu as soon as possible. If you’re local (or just happen to be in the Gettysburg area), I’d love to see you at the Gettysburg Farmers Market. It’s right downtown in Lincoln Square from 7am to 12pm every Saturday through September.
Leave a comment or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like more information or would like to talk to me about placing an order.