Working in catering and running my own cake company

Thursday 6th Oct 2022

Working in catering and running my own cake company

For this Sector Spotlight we are hearing from Josie who studied catering at college and then went onto set up her own cake company in March 2020 just before the country went into lockdown!

Josie’s day-to-day life

As I run my own business, I literally do everything!

The best part of my job is getting to bake and decorate all the cakes and treats for my customers. The workload depends on demand but this could be producing up to 15 celebration cakes a week and then dozens of sweet treats as well. I make brownies, blondies, cookie pies, cookies, cakesicles, milkshakes, old-school cakes, cupcakes, mini doughnuts, geo hearts, and pupcakes! Pretty much any sweet treat you desire, I do!

To make all of these though requires lots of ingredients so I also do lots of restocking and buying ingredients. Some of these cakes and treats also need delivery so that is part of my job! And you can’t forget the cleaning and ensuring my workspace is tidy!

Then with running my own business comes lots of admin work and emails so I spend some time doing that as well as my books (which are all my finances). Furthermore, I  run my own social media pages (@_josiescakeco_) which can be the most frustrating part of my job due to being able to cut through in the market and with the algorithm constantly changing! Nevertheless, my Instagram page has grown to over 2,750 followers!  And finally, I also do business development and I enjoy spending some time thinking of new ideas for my business.

How Josie started running her own cake business

I always had a passion for cooking and baking, and I knew from secondary school that is what I wanted to get into.

After my GCSEs I went and studied catering at a college and won the prize of Catering Student of the Year which allowed me to work for a month at the award-winning Michelin-starred restaurant, Le Manoir Aux Quatre Saisons in Oxfordshire owned by Raymond Blanc. Which was an amazing opportunity!

After I finished doing my catering course I also took part in Camp America where I was a cupcake specialist which consisted of teaching kids how to bake, pipe, handle fondant, and food health and safety.

When I came back from camp, I completed my month with Raymond Blanc and then started to pursue my career as a chef.

It was in March 2020 that I took the plunge and started my own business, just before lockdown. I was doing this part-time initially alongside working as a chef but then went full-time a few months in.

I now have owned my own business for two and a half years. And recently I have been able to go back and work in the patisserie section of Le Manoir Aux Quatre Saisons which was great to find out more about flavour combinations and techniques! Which will help me in my business development!

Josie’s advice for anyone wanting to get into the catering industry

Just jump straight into it, it is a hard industry but your confidence will come!

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