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Food Incubator
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Welcome to the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator

 


The LSU AgCenter Food Incubator is a business incubator that specializes in developing emerging food ventures and providing technical services to existing and emerging companies.

The incubator assists companies survive and grow during the startup period by providing clients with business support, services and resources. Tenants with the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator also have access to scientists and services within the Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences.

Please direct all inquiries, of any nature, about the Food Incubator to Gaye Sandoz by clicking the Inquire about the Food Incubator button below.



Inquire about the Food Incubator


Please include the name of the product and a telephone number in the Message field of your inquiry.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)




The LSU AgCenter Food Incubator will nurture, support and sustain new and existing food companies in Louisiana by providing comprehensive educational and technical assistance in all areas of the food business.

With faculty, staff and students involved, the incubator will foster best practices in food technology, production, packaging and safety and become the trusted source for information and guidance for food entrepreneurs and small food manufacturing businesses.


 The food incubator facility layout includes a Shared-Use Processing Area/kitchen and a Resource Center for assistance in starting a new food business.

The Shared-Use Processing Area-enables a broad range of value-added agricultural and food products to be produced such as fresh-cut vegetables and fruits, jams, jellies, soups, sauces, beverages, pies, cakes, breads, seasoning blends, entrees, side dishes, etc. The incubator offers the equipment to successfully prepare, bottle and package food products for the wholesale market.

Sensory Evaluation Center – Sensory evaluation services are available to food companies by request.

Microbiology Laboratory -–The LSU AgCenter Microbiology Laboratory conducts analysis of finished products, raw materials and environmental areas for routine required testing, and assists in the training of clients regarding sanitary practices. Shelf life studies, at different storage temperatures, are conducted for client products and quantify the impacts of preservation technologies that are utilized.

Analytical Laboratory – The LSU AgCenter Food Science Laboratory performs routine food chemistry testing, including analysis for pH, titratable acidity, salt content, solids content, brix, colorimetry and other methods deemed helpful to clients. In addition, this lab conducts nutrition analysis testing and provides guidance to clients.

Training and Education Conference Room – The Training and Education Area will be outfitted with internet capabilities and a conference room for meetings and is available for our food tenants' use. This enables our tenants to have meetings or tastings in a professional environment.

Resource Center and Library – The library is a resource to staff and clients alike, providing access to extensive business and technical information. In addition, computer workstations will be available enable client research and access to the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator.

Administrative Support Area and Client and Staff Offices – The LSU AgCenter Food Incubator will provide office areas that are rented inexpensively to clients. This way, clients have the option to move both their processing and administrative functions into the center’s facility if desired. Clients will be provided with furniture and internet access.




Application Process

If you are interested in learning more about our application process, please email Gaye Sandoz to schedule to attend the next quarterly informational presentation.

Food companies that will benefit from the services of the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator will be asked to fill out our short business plan form and a cash flow analysis form. To obtain assistance with a business form or expansion strategy, we have partnered with the Louisiana Business and Technology Center.

Costs Involved

We recommend that all companies have a cash flow analysis done with some business expenses saved before applying for our program. You can find information about business startups at Entrepreneur.com.

It cost approximately $1,500 for fees, insurance and permits to get started in the food business.

As a tenant at the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator, you will have access to: 

Commercial kitchen for hourly rental
Dry, cold and pallet storage
Specialized processing equipment on an individual evaluation
Analytical and Testing services




Our facility includes a government-approved commercial kitchen, pilot plant and ample space for tenant freezer, cooler and dry storage needs. Other amenities include office suites, wireless internet service, shipping and receiving area and a conference training room that can be utilized for workshops and meetings.

We recently received a grant from the Office of Community Development that will allow us to purchase new equipment and increase support to our tenants.




Food Incubator Informational Presentation

Join us for a step-by-step presentation on how to start a food business, information about the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator, testimonials from successful Food Companies and business tips from the Louisiana Business and Technology Center. Don’t miss this presentation if you are interested in launching a food business or renting a facility for your new food business.

When:  Friday, February 12, from 10 AM - noon
Where:  214 Efferson Hall (Highland Road at W. Parker Boulevard on the LSU campus) 
Cost:  $30 per person

Registration Required. To reserve your spot at the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator presentation, please contact Ashley Gutierrez by February 5 or register HERE.


Good Manufacturing Practices for the Food Industry

This course provides participants with practical training on developing, implementing, and maintaining CGMPs within a food manufacturing facility. CGMPs are critical to protect your products from chemical, microbiological and physical contamination. The course covers the background and origin of GMPs, what's changing with FSMA, and what employees need to know for total compliance. 

When:  February 18-19
Where:  214 Efferson Hall (Highland Road at W. Parker Boulevard on the LSU campus)
Cost:  $350 per person (includes breakfast, lunch and snacks)

Registration Required. To reserve your spot at the GMP training, please contact Ashley Gutierrez by February 12 or register HERE


Food Incubator Educational Seminar Series:

Food Marketing

Do you have questions about how to effectively market your product? Then join the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator for this informative presentation covering a wide variety of topics in food marketing. This two-hour course will focus on creating a marketing calendar, how to do product demos, creating sales sheets to help you market your product successfully, and so much more!

When:  Friday, February 26, from 10 AM - noon
Where:  212 Efferson Hall (Highland Road at W. Parker Boulevard on the LSU Campus)
Cost: $75 per person

Registration Required. To reserve your spot at the LSU AgCenter Food Marketing Seminar, please contact Ashley Gutierrez by February 22 or register HERE.

Understanding Food Pricing for Beginning Manufacturers

Please join us for a step-by-step presentation on how to  price your product for the food industry. Don't miss this presentation if you are interested in launching a food business! Let the professionals at the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator help you with any questions that you may have!

When:  Friday, March 4, from 10 AM - noon
Where:  212 Efferson Hall (Highland Road at W. Parker Boulevard on the LSU Campus)
Cost:  $75 per person

Registration Required. To reserve your spot at the LSU AgCenter Food Pricing Seminar, please contact Ashley Gutierrez by February 29 or register HERE.

Understanding Food Label Requirements

If you would like to learn more about requirements for creating your food label, including the nutrition facts panel and ingredient statement, then be sure to attend this seminar. DHH and Food Incubator instructors will be available to answer any questions that you may have regarding this process. 

When:  Friday, March 11, from 10 AM - noon
Where:  212 Efferson Hall (Highland Road at W. Parker Boulevard on the LSU Campus)
Cost:  $75 per person

Registration Required. To reserve your spot at the LSU AgCenter Food Label Requirements Seminar, please contact Ashley Gutierrez by March 7 or register HERE

Food Processing 101

Are you overwhelmed with requirements for starting a new food business? Then join the Food Incubator for our Food Processing 101 seminar. We'll cover topics such as:  process authority letters, 
how to properly calibrate your instruments for testing, good record keeping practices, and the importance of sensory testing and customer feedback. 

When:  Friday, March 18, from 10 AM - noon
Where:  212 Efferson Hall (Highland Road at W. Parker Boulevard on the LSU Campus)
Cost:  $75 per person

Registration Required. To reserve your spot at the LSU AgCenter Food Processing 101 Seminar, please contact Ashley Gutierrez by March 14 or register HERE



Educational Seminar Series Registration Form


Physical Address:

LSU AgCenter Food Incubator
120 Clyde Ingram Hall
Tower Drive, LSU campus
Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge LA, 70803-0100

Mailing Address:

LSU AgCenter Food Incubator
Attention: Gaye Sandoz
Norman J Efferson Hall
110 LSU Union Square
Baton Rouge, LA 70803-0106.

Phone: 225-578-0853

For business planning, contact: Charlie D’Agostino , Executive Director, LBTC Louisiana Business and Technology Center - 2005 National Incubator of the Year



Gaye SandozTOP

Please click on the photo for Gaye Sandoz's contact information.
Please click on the photo for Gaye Sandoz's contact information.
Gaye Sandoz, Director for the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator, has over 35 years in the food business in all areas from food product development and institutional food service management to catering and is a self-taught chef. Ms. Sandoz graduated with a B.S. degree in nutrition and completed graduate work at LSU and University of Mississippi, studying Institutional Food Service Management. Her expertise and experience for the past 15 years have been largely with new food product development, business development and marketing with small and medium-size food businesses. Gaye owns Clever Kitchen and sells her invention the “Microwave BBQ Chicken Roaster” on QVC.


 

Please direct all inquiries, of any nature, about the Food Incubator to Gaye Sandoz by clicking the Inquire about the Food Incubator button below.



Inquire about the Food Incubator





Please include the name of the product and a telephone number in the Message field of your inquiry.



Dr. Luis EspinozaTOP

Please click on the photo for Luis Espinoza's contact information.
Please click on the photo for Luis Espinoza's contact information.
Dr. Luis Espinoza
LSU AgCenter Food Incubator Manager and Technical Services

149 Clyde Ingram Hall
office 225.578.3713
email
Last Updated: 12/9/2015 3:54:00 PM