Stories by Bimbola Oyesola
Investment in cool room is one of the businesses that you cannot go wrong with as far as hitting millions without much stress. Cold room business is a thriving business in Nigeria, it is a money spinning business, a good number of Nigerians have become multi-billionaires because of cold room business.
Cold room business is all about food preservation that is, selling of frozen food items like, frozen poultry products and frozen fish.
Although the Federal Government banned the importation of frozen poultry into the country, that has given people with business foresight opportunity to look inward and they are still making it large. However, cold room business entails much more than selling frozen livestock products and frozen fish. Sometimes, people involved in cold room business sell other food items that could be preserved in refrigerators, prawns, ice cream, ice block, yoghurt, among others.
That is why; much of what you will sell in your cold room business will be pre-packaged food items and preserved food items.
Be that as it may, to set up a successful cold room business, some important things must be put in place, including
The first thing you do is to look for place for your cold room business. It should be a warehouse or a store with enough space for your cold room business.
Apart from looking for a suitable place for your cold room business, you should also understand that, it needs enough air in order to ensure that your food items are well preserved
Size of the business
Cold room business particularly, in Nigeria is of different sizes, so you have to decide on which scale you are embarking on. You should decide whether you want to run a large scale cold room or a small scale one.
If you are going for small scale cold room business, then you have to know that you will only be selling to the people in your neighbourhood, but if you are going for large or commercial scale, then you should know that you are going into a very big cold room business, which will have to do with packaging and importation of preserved food items as well as local food items. That is a big investment.
In case what is in your mind is small scale cold room business, you have to make sure the following facilities and logistics are in place: get a warehouse, or cold room, be sure there is constant power supply plus refrigerators, and be sure you have to locate closer to where you will be buying your products.
Register with NAFDAC
You have to understand that since you are going to deal with food items, you have to register with NAFDAC, and do not forget that some of your products will be imported from outside the country, and so find out what it takes to register with NAFDAC, and do same.
But note that importing your consumable food items probably means that you may run a large scale cold room business.
Know the products you are selling
You have to do a proper home work to determine what type of consumable food items you want to sell. The type you know that your Neighbourhood will patronise you.
Though cold room business is a multi-billion naira enterprise, the location of your business also matter peradventure, in your locality, there are other people who do the same business you are also doing, that calls for the necessity of determining what kind of preserved food items you want to sell.
Knowing your locality properly and knowing what kind of products you want to sell in your cold room can make you have an edge over your competitors in the the event of stiff competition.
Construct your cool room
You will have to build your cold room, pay someone, who is versed in cold room business to build it unless you want to run a small scale facility business, then few refrigerators will be okay, but if you are running large scale cool room business, then you need a cool room.
Constant power supply in your locality
Cold room business entirely depends on power supply and in this regard the government as well as the Discos have not lived up to expectation. Hence what you need to do is to have a stand-by generator to provide constant power to your cool room business.
You must take this instruction very important, otherwise your products will spoil, and your business gone.
You should know where to buy your products from. This is an important decision you should not shy away from, and if you must get your products available anytime that there is demand for them, you should have someone that is supplying you these products in your cool room, best still, if you can, you should be processing your product yourself.
Buy livestock, butcher them yourself, if possible or if you can still, venture into livestock production, own poultry farm, slaughter the chickens at maturity, preserved them in you cold room, and sell them when there is demand. By this practice, you will be making more profit than if you were buying them elsewhere or import them.
And above all, make sure that these other facilities are readily available. You will need to have weighing scale, tables and knives, customers’ shopping bags etc.
Besides, people that will be holding parties that will patronise you, there may be need to source for more customers, that you will be supplying your products, for example, you have to source for your customers at the supermarkets, restaurants, hotels, fast food centres, etc.
In order to create awareness for your business, you can also advertise on radio, community newspapers, create a website and make good use of the social media, like Facebook, Instagram and others.