UK Smoker - looking to scale up

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by ripley405, Jan 12, 2015.

  1. ripley405

    ripley405 Newbie

    Hi All!

    I'm a 36 year old dude who's loved smoked food for an age!  I've recently moved into the middle of nowhere and I am trying to realize my dream of setting up a small commercial smokehouse for retail of my wares to local food establishments (at first) then go national via an online shop.

    I live in the UK, in West Yorkshire, about an hours drive from both Leeds and Manchester.

    I'm getting sick of sitting at a desk staring at a computer for 8 hours a day, so its time to do something about it!

    Only problem is that i live in a Smoke Control Zone...  I just had a call from my local council though and it looks as if there is a way around this legal issue:

    1) using a smoking cabinet that contains the smoke (I could expel the smoke from one cycle per day but I couldn't have a chimney)

    2) installing costly PM filters/sprays to ensure that any smoke emitted is within the healthy limits as provided by the Environment Agency

    3) set up shop in a non smoke control zone (30 mins away)

    Now that I have this information to hand I can look for premises, but does anybody have any experience in this area?  Ways I can comply or systems/units I can use?

    I'm all for traditional smoking methods, but I'm a scientist at heart and would love to create/adapt modern technology to produce classical tasting smoked food, but with a modern twist...

    Looking forwards to talking to some more experienced people on here.

  2. [​IMG]   Good morning and welcome to the forum, from another chilly day here in East Texas. Lots of great people with tons of information on just about  everything. 

  3. Glad you joined the group. The search bar at the top of any page is your best friend.
    About anything you wanna know about smoking/grilling/curing/brining/cutting or slicing
    and the list goes on has probably been posted. Remember to post a QVIEW of your smokes.
    We are all smoke junkies here and we have to get our fix. If you have questions
    Post it and you will probably get 10 replies with 11 different answers. That is
    because their are so many different ways to make great Q...
    Happy smoken.
  4. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi JK - You and I are doing something fairly similar I think - you in Yorkshire and me in Kent. I currently run the IT department at a local independent school - what do you do? It would be good to know what sort of things you have been smoking up till now.

    A big part of making it a success will be finding a couple of bread-and-butter products that you can produce in reasonable quantity that will sell at a reasonable profit. This will then give you the leeway to try out different things to add to your core products.

    An imporant thing to begin with is to get your name known - this will involve giving away your first few batches to family and friends and making your first few sales at a farmers market - or similar.

    Do not have too much personal pride in the products that you already make. You might love them but others may not. Take one of your current products - say bacon(?) - and tweak the salt/sugar/smoke etc in a scientific way and hold some blind tastings to see what potential customers prefer.

    Listen to your sample groups. Encourage HONEST feedback from them. Don't let then tell you it was great when in reality even their dog would not eat it.
    The single chamber of smoke per day is really not going to be practical. The actual smoking process produces relatively modest smoke however it is usually very fragrant and will be easily noticed. You also need to keep a steady stream of smoke flowing over your food. For many products the smoking is as much about removing moisture as it is about imparting smoke flavour. As a start up, out of the three options the third one will unfortunately really be the only practical one.

    If you need to discuss further then please let me know.

    Cheers and the best of luck moving forward [​IMG]

  5. smokin monkey

    smokin monkey Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi JK, welcome to the group, please be sure to check in with the UK Group.

    Sound intresting project that you are embarking on.

    Sounds like we have another Wade on our hands 😃, you will get used to the friendly banter as well.

    Sorry can't help with the smoke problems, but as Wade has pointed out, even home smokes draws attention from neighbours!

    Their is a lot to get in place before you start, HACCP Plans, registering with the local council for inspection etc etc.

    I live in North NOTTINGHAM, just off J28 of M1.

    Would be good to see you at our 2nd Annual Weekend get together, end of July beginning of August in Woodhall Spa, I am sure you will be getting a message from our leader Danny.

    Look forward to seeing some of your Q's, and as everybody says, please provide pictures so we can all drool.

    Smokin Monkey �
  6. ripley405

    ripley405 Newbie

    Hey Y'all...

    Thanks for the replies.  It's tough trying to find time at the moment as we have just had our first child.  A 4 week old baby is proving more difficult than perfecting a recipe for beek jerky!

    Any how, all this inclement weather is giving me a lot of time to research recipes, locations for my smokehouse and put startup costs together, so can't all be bad!!!

    First off - thanks for the invite to the UK page - i have joined and will check in when I can - I appreciate the brotherhood of smoke and will definitely be calling upon your knowledge in the coming months!

    Wade - thanks for your message and pointers - I have had my concerns about using a single cell due to the reasons you outlined; the only reason I have considered it is that a legal loophole would allow me to use this method in a smoke control zone, and expel the cabinet of smoke at the end of the day IF I wasn't causing a nuisance to neighbours...

    I want to take smoking to a scientific level, but I just can't see how you'd get the mellow notes by using this method.

    Looks like I'll still have a commute!!!

    I have a couple of recipes for my "bread and butter" smokes - I'll share pics in Spring when I have perfected them.

    Not sure I'll be able to make the annual get together but I'll look out for it and confirm later.

    Thanks for the warm welcome - I cant wait to get stuck in properly now.  Let the good times roll!


Share This Page