How to Start a Profitable Snacks Business in Kenya.

Eating is inevitable, especially snaking, Kenyans really love that.

Talk of samosas, mandazis, boiled eggs, smokies, soft chapatis, and some cakes and you have all the attention of Kenyans.

On the streets, in public places, in private institutions, snacks are always selling.

Speaking of, the most preferred snacks by Kenyans are: – samosas, smokies, boiled eggs, and sausages.

These snacks will sell so fast and earn you the fortune you are looking for. In fact, the snacks business is currently one of the most profitable businesses in Kenya today.

It doesn’t matter if you are thinking of starting on a small scale or a large scale, you will sell.

But first, let’s answer these questions to give you footing on the snacking business. 

How much is the capital for both small and large scale snaking business? What is a suitable location for the snacks business? What are the relevant requirements before you start hawking snacks? How much is the relative profitability of the business?

Let us dive just in and keep the discussion going.

What’s the best location to set up a snacks business?

You can identify a busy road-side and station your vending cart there.

Alternatively, you can identify a busy street and station your vending cart or box there.

Better still, frequently visited places like hotels and restaurants can form a very profitable base, just position yourself outside such a place close to the entry and capture all leads entering and leaving the hotel.

Urban areas like busy towns have better embraced the consumption of snacks than rural areas. That, therefore, means you should prioritize urban settings over rural settings for your snacks business idea.

If you are starting on a large scale and prefer a shop other than a vending cart or box, then that will be alright.

Also Read: How to Make Money with a Garbage Collection Business in Kenya.

Only ensure that it is located in a place where so many people visit.

The best locations for a snack business may include bus stops, learning institutions, bars and restaurants, market place, junctions, hospitals, industrial and residential areas.

Requirements for a snacks business start-up.

What are the basic requirements before you can go ahead and start your snacks business?

Let us find out:-

  1. Decide the snack types to handle – Do you intend to handle eggs and smokies only? Eggs only? Smokies only? Samosas only? Sausages only? A blend of Eggs, smokies, samosas, and sausages? Whatever you choose to deal in as informed by your market research, stick to it.
  2. Find a supplier – you need someone or a store from which you will get a cheap supply of eggs, smokies, sausages, and samosas or their materials. Liaise with major stores in your town and negotiate fair prices for those supplies. Get in touch with people already in the business like hotels and know who supplies them and if the deal is fair then go for it. A tray of eggs at Ksh.280-300 and a 22 piece smokie packet at Ksh.300-330 is not that bad.
  3. Kachumbari items – this includes buying tomatoes, onions, Dania, tomato sauce, and chili sauce. Look for a cheap source of the Kachumbari items.
  4. Acquire premises, vending cart, or box – you will need a premise from which you will operate. If you go for a shop, remember the location specifications. If you go for a vending cart to enable you to push around for more clients, then approximately Ksh.5,000 should get you one. A vending box may cost you about Ksh.3,000 – Ksh.4,000.
  5. Acquire the necessary licenses:

  • County Council Single Business Permit – this may cost about Ksh.5,000 per year for a small business depending on your county. Up to Ksh.15,000 is applicable for a bigger business for those starting on a large scale.
  • Food handler’s certificate.
  1. Most people who are operating a stationary box actually partner with hotels and restaurants to operate under their name. If you are mobile or independent though, acquire the above relevant licenses.
  2. Start your snacks business. Handle customers well, offer quality, and build relationships for more clients.

How much capital is needed for this kind of start-up?

If you are starting on a small scale, then Ksh.5,000 for the cart, Ksh.5,000 for licensing and Ksh.5,000 for the materials will be enough to get you started. That makes Ksh.15,000 only.

If you want to start a large scale business, then you have more expenses to cater for. Premises, more materials, licensing, and other costs, which should be well sorted with about Ksh.100,000 – Ksh.150,000.

How profitable is the snaking venture?

Buy a packet of smokies at Ksh.330, each piece at Ksh.15. Sell one smokie at Ksh.30 and that makes a profit of Ksh.15 per piece.

That’s a gross profit of Ksh.330 per packet. What if you sell 5 packets a day? A whole gross of Ksh.1,650. Remove several costs like kachumbari and you will have about Ksh.1,100 as your profit for smokies only that day.

Buy a tray of 30 eggs at Ksh.300, each at Ksh.10.

Add value and sell one egg at Ksh.20 and that makes a profit of Ksh.10 per egg.

On this too, you will have made 100% profit of Ksh.300 per tray.

If you sell 5 trays a day, that makes Ksh.1,500. If you reduce costs, you may have ksh.1,000 all to yourself that day from eggs only.

Sausages and samosas aside, you can already see how profitable this business can be.

Is this a business you’d like to venture into? Let’s keep the conversation going in the comments section.

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