The Town of Chester, NH has a small kitchen, that the NH Department of Health & Human Services Food Protection Unit has certified for commercial use since 2002. The Town of Chester owns the property which is the kitchen of the former Chester Elementary School, and is located in the back of the Multi-Purpose Room at 84 Chester Street. The Town rents this facility on an hourly basis, which allows any individual, or business that is approved for use by the Food Protection Unit to apply for and maintain a commercial food license, with the Chester Kitchen as their address.
Secondly, Chester Organizations and residents, who have priority use of the kitchen, have a better facility in which to prepare foods for events, or non-profit resale. This project has the support of NH Rural Development Council, and the USDA Small Business Development Center.
From a Commercial Food Processors standpoint (any individual using the kitchen more than 4 times per month, and will sell in retail establishments), this kitchen is perfect for bakers, caterers, and any other type of food product that can be approved by the Food protection Unit. From the standpoint of an Occasional Food Processor (an individual who uses the kitchen less than 4 times each month) this kitchen is ideal for one who has lots of fruit to turn into jam, or wants to do a large volume of cooking for a party or non-profit event.
The Chester Kitchen offers the following:
Gas Convection Oven
Gas Range with oven
2 Bay Reach-In Refrigerator
Commercial Hobart Mixer
Food Prep Sink
The Town of Chester rents the Kitchen only on an hourly basis. The Town will take no responsibility for training in food service safety, nor will it provide any marketing assistance. Each processor must provide proof of insurance to use the kitchen, and to indemnify the town from any liability. All State guidelines regarding food service safety are the responsibility of each processor.
To get started email the Site Administrator (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your inquiries for a return response: Include your name, phone number, and type of food service business you represent. A visit/tour of the facility is available Monday through Friday 8 AM – 4 PM, and by appointment. Prior to your visit, please access the Chester Kitchen Policies and Procedures Handbook and Resource Guide, Chester Kitchen Application, as well as the NH License Application for retail food processing or food service establishment (catering). See .pdf files below.
Then you may contact one of the two State Inspectors for the Chester Kitchen. If you will be processing a specialty food for retail sale, contact Ms. Royann Bossidy, 603-271-3989. If you are a caterer or food service establishment, contact Ms. Rhonda Thomas, 603-271-4589. Explain the type of food you wish to produce, and how you process the food (I.e., how it is cooked, packaged, canned, transported, etc.). Ms. Thomas and Ms. Bossidy will be able to tell you if the Chester Kitchen is suitable for your processing, and the type of license for which you should apply. If you are still building your business plan, and are not ready to actually reserve the Chester Kitchen for use, do not apply for your State Food Service License. A license for food service production at the Chester Kitchen implies that you will rent the kitchen for your business use upon receipt of your NH Food Service License.
After you have spoken to one of the State Inspectors, again contact the Site Administrator via email for EPA number to be included on your application. Check “no” to Town Water or Wastewater. When your application is received by the state, they will contact you for a date and time to meet you for inspection at the Chester Kitchen. You must contact the Site Administrator for an available date and time for your meeting and inspection with the State Inspector for your license processing. This is to ensure that either the Site Administrator, or a Town representative will be available to let you into the kitchen. When that meeting has been concluded, you will again arrange a meeting with the Site Administrator at the Chester Kitchen to exchange documents (license, insurance, application, etc.). At that time, you will be issued a key for use of the Chester Kitchen, and you are ready for use of the facility.
Please be advised that Chester Organizations and residents will have priority usage of the Kitchen, but since they know well in advance of Town events, there should be no problem scheduling the time that you will need. The Chester Kitchen is open 7 days a week, from 5:00 AM to 8:00 PM.
A Business Plan
There are any number of resources for you to write a business plan, including software. Or seek assistance through:
Business training, Loans up to $10,000, Networking opportunities provided through a unique network of over 50 peer groups each made up of four to 10 members who have different small businesses, both product-based and service-oriented. To find our more about MicroCredit-NH, call David Hamel at 603-620-0963, or 1-800-769-3482 extension 227 or email him at email@example.com
NH DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES FOOD PROTECTION UNIT
For complete information go to http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/fp/index.htm
US DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Foods processed with any type of meat product must be approved by USDA.
Call Don Fleming, 781-398-2290, ext. 240. Explain the type of food you wish to produce, and how you process the food (i.e., how it is cooked, packaged, canned, transported, etc.).
FDA requirements and Good Manufacturing Practice for Low-Acid Foods, and Acidified Foods: Food and Drug Administration, LACF Registration Coordinator (HFS-618)
200 C St. SW, Washington, D.C. 20204
For more information go to http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_s.7_0_A/7_0_1OB?navtype=SU&navid=FOOD_NUTRITION
FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
Interstate retail sale of foods must be approved by the FDA. Call 781-596-7730. Explain the type of food you wish to sell, and how you process the food (i.e., how it is cooked, packaged, canned, transported, etc.). Visit FDAs Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) website at: http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodSafety/FSMA/default.htm. For more information go to http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/list.html
FOOD SAFETY AND HACCP WORKSHOPS.
Free workshops are held by the UNH Cooperative Extension, Rockingham County, 113 North Road, Brentwood NH 03833. Lynn Harrison, Extension Educator at UNH Coop. Ext, Brentwood, 603-679-5616 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Go to http://ceinfo.unh.edu/FoodSafe/FoodSafe.htm for information relating to other counties.
See the complete resource guide in the back of our policies and procedures manual. Click on the .pdf links below.
Resource PDF File
Directions (PDF 15kb)
Last updated 4/13