Supporting food entrepreneurs in creating profitable and sustainable businesses for over 25 years.
The Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen (The NOCK) is a 3rd party GMP audited 24/7 shared kitchen facility that is conveniently located in Bowling Green, OH
Small Business Solutions
Our team of experts can connect you with a wide range of technical solutions to help you overcome your business challenges. Our team has helped hundreds of companies start and grow their business.
It is critical for a small food business to have as many opportunities to market and sell their product as possible. In today’s market that means having a digital presence. Our team can help guide you through best practices and get your digital storefront up and running.
Product Packaging & Barcode Assistance
Having the correct label is fundamental for any successful food product. It needs to meet certain standards to even make it onto store shelves, as well as often being the first introduction of your product to your customer. It also needs to be affordable to keep your product in the red.
Having worked with entrepreneurs for 25 years we have a deep understanding of what is needed to launch and grow a successful food business. We have experts and a network that can help in all facets of business enhancement.
The NOCK can help entrepreneurs or restaurant owners take that next step in making a signature sauce, a special salad dressing or a delicious snack. We can assist you in developing your new food product in our commercially-licensed kitchen and food processing area that has top grade equipment to get you started and our hands-on team will be there to help every step of the way.
The facility is routinely inspected by the local Health Department, Ohio Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This allows most of the foods produced in the kitchen to be marketed and sold in local, regional, and national markets.
What can be processed at the NOCK?
- Baked items
- High Acid products – tomato based sauces, ex. (Sloppy Joe, BBQ)
- Acidified products – salsa, hot sauce, etc. (products that have chunks of peppers or pureed)
- Refrigerated products
- Dry fill – spices, teas, rubs
- Dehydrated products, excluding jerky
- Have another product in mind? Contact us as we may be able to accommodate.
What services do you offer?
- Assistance for food entrepreneurs in the initial stages of development
- Small business development services
- Nutritional information is offered (for a fee)
Can I make a product without following all the necessary steps?
The NOCK is designed for business advancement and therefore the requirements are necessary to ensure the integrity of all operators at the facility. The NOCK is audited by a third party to ensure Good Manufacturing Practices and therefore, in order to maintain the exceptional level, all directives need to be enforced.
Is it possible to make product at NOCK for personal use?
An individual or organization desiring to use the kitchen needs to be an official business, comply with the health department regulations, and have the necessary license.
Who makes my product?
Each business is responsible for soliciting their own workforce and the necessary training associated. Depending on the product, on average 4-5 workers can achieve production in a 5-7-hour day. On occasion, people working for one business are willing to assist others which is valuable in knowing the operational details. NOCK manager can share contacts.
How do I protect my recipe?
All food products need to include ingredients on the label in order of prominence in the recipe. Therefore, patents are not pursued. Production methods are shared with facility staff but not the recipe.
What equipment is in the general kitchen?
- 4 burner commercial stove with 2 convection ovens
- 2 bakery depth convection ovens
- Hobart dough mixer with attachments
- Hobart chopper
- Refrigeration and Freezer space
- Dry filler (to be used to dispense dry product into containers)
- Three compartment sink, vegetable prep sink
- Stainless work surfaces
- Liquid filler (to be used for sauces, condiments, etc.)
What equipment is offered in the food processing area for bottling?
- Grade level loading dock
Piston filler for automatic filling of containers
- 2 – 60-gallon and 1-100-gallon steam jacketed kettle
- 1 – 40-gallon braising pan
- Stainless tables, certified scales and pH meters for testing batches
- Labeler to be used with your labels
What other capabilities are available?
- Storage ability – (if product is taken off-site you would need to have a warehouse license)
- Conference Room Rental – (for events, meeting room, etc.)
- Facility video security system provides increased protection
- Specialized programming with other similar operators for information and networking
- Visibility of the product as displayed on the shelves at the facility
- Once you go through training with CIFT staff the processing areas are open 24/7 and you can schedule time in advance
Did you know?
The NOCK can help restaurant owners; food trucks or entrepreneurs take that next step in making a signature sauce or a delicious snack! Develop your new food product at the NOCK! Numerous clients have achieved success transforming a recipe into a product.
Small Business Solutions
As an entrepreneur/small business owner, you may face a lot of challenges when producing and selling your products. Getting all the answers you need can be overwhelming. That is why we offer services that will help you take the next step in your small business. Our team of experts can help and connect you with technical capabilities, including:
- E-Commerce Assistance
- Product Packaging & Barcode Assistance (Label Design & Print Review )
- Label Printing Services
- Recipe Scale Up
- Food Supplier Connect
- Nutritional Fact Label Creation
Having an optimized eCommerce presence can build brand awareness and even streamline your order fulfillment. However, finding the time and correct tools to do so for a busy entrepreneur can be a challenge. Our team has the experience to find the right tools for you as well as to get you set up for success. Whether it is using platforms such as Square, Shopify, or something else, we can help you build your online brand and scale your business.
Product Packaging &
Getting the label you need for your product requires meeting multiple challenges and our team has the resources and expertise to meet all of them. We can help you design your label, make it scannable, print it in the volume that makes sense to your needs, and even do the nutritional analysis if you require it. As we help you grow your business, we have the network and resources that will help you scale your label needs while controlling costs.
We have spent over 25 years helping food processors and building a network of service providers to address every level of food production. Our network has a proven track record of delivering the solutions and innovation to help food companies grow.
Our team can help guide you to the correct type of service you need as well as help you manage the project to completion. The CIFT network can help with large scale automation, environmental monitoring/food safety and many other multi-service projects. We can help save you the time and resources it takes to get those complex initiatives started and implemented.