Queens coworking space aims to help food businesses grow
JAMAICA, QUEENS – Food business owners and entrepreneurs in Queens will soon have a space – a great space – to start and grow their businesses, and they won’t have to travel far.
Essential Kitchen in Jamaica is the first black-owned commercial kitchen in New York City. From the outside it looks like an ordinary brick building on a busy street, but for General Manager Dianna Rose, it’s a dream come true.
“We were strapped for capital,” Rose said. “We were stretched out on sleep. We were strapped for resources, but you know what? The community said, “No Dianna, we’ve got you. “
She was so close to giving up but succeeded. The dedication ceremony took place on Wednesday after years of hard work and it’s not an accomplishment she intends to keep to herself.
The 6,500 square foot space will be available for other food business owners and entrepreneurs who may not have the capital to start and grow their own businesses.
Natrea Blake, a friend of Rose’s from Laurelton Farmer’s Market, said the new space will give community members a stable base.
“Now they will have a resource and a place to come in and do their body butters or make food,” said Blake. “She now provides that. She now fills that void.
The coworking space will facilitate the opportunities to be successful in manufacturing custom products, catering meals or special orders.
“There is such a need, so the impact ranges from everything from providing physical space for businesses to prepare delicious and personalized meals, but also providing resources,” said Rose.
Available resources include access to information on grants and contracts. Rose said small businesses are not always a priority for municipal contracts because they lack the capacity.
The facility is not yet fully operational, but with donations they hope to start soon.
Rose also said that it doesn’t matter what your background – ethnic or professional. As long as you have the motivation and the ambition to create, the space is available to help you grow your business.
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