Monday, November 16, 2009

In the beginning...

I said I would never do it. I would never color my hair. I would never wear capri pants. And I would never write a blog. Who does that anyway? Only people who have time to, that's who! And I don't! Well, after numerous boxes of hair color, many pairs of capri pants, I am now, officially, beginning my life as a bloggest...uh hem...blogger. Watch out world! Here I come.

Today was a big day for the H'bergers (well, 3/4 of us). Zoey and I walked Gavin to school. And when I say "walked" I really mean, we drove 80% of the way there, then got out and walked him as far as we could. Hey, it was FREEZING outside this morning! The plan is to walk him there and back. That's the plan. We'll see if it actually ends up happening. But he was very excited for mommy and Zoey to take him to school. He wanted to know what Zoey and I would be doing today. I said I might go work out and take Zoey to the Kids' Club for a while. Gavin told me, "Yeah, I think that would be good for her." Well, thanks for your affirmation Gav! But he was right. After a bit of acting like a slug stuck to my leg, I pealed her off, and left her to play. She did better than I did. I was worried she would be unhappy and I was sad that I couldn't strap her on my back and do a little Body Step with Zoey in tote. But she did do great. Gavin knew she would.

I've been researching information lately about the necessary (and legal) steps to take in order to make and sell a homemade food product. Let's just say this...IT'S NOT AN EASY PROCESS! I want to can and sell salsa. (RMT (random Macey thought): I have a problem saying "can" when it's going in a "jar", but whatever.) Well, first I need to know the Ph level of the salsa to make sure it's safe for jarring...uh hem...canning. And to do that, I have to send it to Oklahoma State to be tested. (eye roll) Upon testing I can find out if my salsa will be shelf stable once canned. If not, then they will recommend to add things such as vinegar to increase the acidity, thus make it safe to can, thus shelf stable. I stand firm. I will NOT add vinegar to my salsa! And unlike wearing capris, this one I'm sticking to!

After finding out if my salsa is shelf stable, (RMT: I better not send OSU my recipe on my OU stationary...who knows what they will say is in my salsa!) then I am one step closer to producing it...but not so fast. I need a commercially licensed kitchen to produce my salsa, not my kitchen. Ugh. It's not like you can just throw it all in the food processor and then poof, sell it. I have to make it, jar it, and can it (seal it). And anyone who knows anything about canning, knows it's a time consuming process all in itself.

After finding a commerically licensed kitchen (who will probably charge me to use their facility) I have to get my own license. So kitchen must be licensed, I must be licensed and my product must be sustainable. Now for labeling...the FDA requires certain information to be on the label of any food item that is sold to someone outside of your immediate family. (I guess your immediate family knows whether trust your food/decision making skills or not.) The product must list the weight, the name of the product and on the back must list the ingredients, any allergens, and the name and address of the company. (Sigh) I'm not asking for Wal-Mart to carry my salsa...come on FDA...seriously?! And we haven't even sniffed marketing and sales yet!!!

So many questions. So many hoops and loops and inspections to hop through. Believe me, I don't care to give anyone botulism (well, maybe there are a few I can think of), but the process of allowing the regular ole Mr. American to get his product from his kitchen to the market is insane. Honestly.

And I just might be crazy enough to try it.

Until next time. Mwah!

1 comment:

  1. Macey,
    I don't know if I am the first reply but I wanted you to know that Dixie and I are very rpoud of you (as always) for all you are doing. You are very talented (cooking skills and creativity with this site to name a couple). You are a wonderful mother, wife and daughter in law - we will continue to pray for you that this newest adventure will truly be rewarding in many ways for you.
    God Bless