Synchronicity has been tapping me on the shoulder once again, whispering "Pay attention!" into my ear. It all started when I got involved with The Bountiful Sprout, and they put me in charge of keeping track of all our vendors' and producers' permits and certifications - a real pain in the tuckus since every town/city/county has their own set of rules and regulations. One thing is universal though - if you want to start any kind of little food business, whether it be selling your yummy cakes or maybe your secret salsa recipe, you must prepare everything in a certified commercial kitchen. You can not operate from your home kitchen (unless, of course, you want to spend thousands upgrading it to commercial status, which would seriously eat into any profits you hoped to make, would it not?). That is why, whenever we come across someone who is trying to operate from their home, we try to hook them up with another vendor who already has a kitchen, and might be willing to rent them some space. Our community center has one I think, but I've heard they charge out the wazoo.

Back in February, when I attended the Story Circle Network conference, I spent some time chatting with a lovely woman (and gifted writer) named Susan Tweit, who lives in Salado, Colorado. She and her husband have reclaimed an old industrial property in the heart of town, and she was telling me about the wonderful, year-round farmers' market that is an easy walk just down the block from her. Wouldn't that be nice? She really grabbed my attention when she mentioned the new couple in town who were transforming a building next to the market into a cafe and commercial kitchen, with spaces available for rent to any of the farmers and producers who wish to sell these "value-added" products. Brilliant! If only we had something like that around here.

Then, last week in Houston, I came across a newspaper article about young Lucrece Borrego, a former investment banker in NYC who, when she saw the coming credit crash, decided to ditch that career and indulge her passion for food instead. After moving to Houston, she too stumbled across an article, about a rent-a-kitchen for budding chefs in Austin, called The Kitchen Space. How did I not know about this? Borrego knew a good thing when she saw it, so set about to launch a similar business there in Houston, which is called Kitchen Incubator. According to Borrego, there are lots of people out there right now who have been laid off, and are looking for something like this - a way to start their businesses without the financial responsibility of having their own commercial kitchen. Judging from the recent TV special I watched, about the mushrooming food trailer business in various spots around the country, including Austin, I'd say she's right on the money. When asked what led them to opening a trailer eatery, most of those they interviewed said "Well, I got laid off, and I couldn't afford to open a restaurant..." So, kudos to you Ms. Borrego. Just goes to show -- you can take the girl out of investment banking, but you can't take the instinct for business out of the girl!

P.S. Many thanks to for the above image.
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Reviewed by juragan asem
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Rating : 4.5