Do you want to start a small-scale honey processing business? If yes, you are in the right place. Here is a complete guide to starting a honey processing plant in India with costs, machinery required, licenses, and more.
Honey is a widely consumable item. In addition, the product has both domestic and export potential. If you are living in a honey-producing area, then you can consider starting a processing unit. The location of the unit plays a huge role in this business. Because you have to source enough raw honey to produce packaged honey.
This is a comparatively easy business to start in the agro-processing industry. In addition, the business demands a small startup capital investment initially. However, you can also start a business on a large scale.
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Is Honey Processing Business Profitable?
Honey is an essential ingredient in various food recipes. There is considerable demand for honey and other products. There are so many food processing industries that use honey as the major sweetening agent. The list includes bakery, confectionery, candy, marmalades, jams, spreads, breakfast cereals, beverages, milk products, and many preserved products.
It also has vast applications in the pharmaceutical industry. In addition, honey is an important ingredient in the organic or herbal cosmetics industry. Generally, people who are in the dieting process prefer honey as a food-sweetening item. With changing lifestyles and increasing health consciousness, honey is
been increasingly consumed as healthy food. That is why the demand for honey in the domestic market is increasing rapidly.
Apart from the domestic market, processed honey has a sustainable demand in the foreign market. In addition, the demand for organic honey is also increasing. Some of the major honey-importing countries are Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Japan, and Italy. China is the world-leading producer as well as exporter of honey.
8 Steps to Start Honey Processing Business
1. Write a Business Plan
Any type of manufacturing business demands a lot of essential considerations before commencing the venture. In starting this business, you must consider the easy availability of raw honey continuously in your factory. So, you have to check whether the location is perfect for the business or not.
Check the local market first. You must do a market survey before starting the business. Identify the demand for bulk supply. In addition, try to analyze the local market demand for processed and branded honey. A brief market survey will help you in crafting the business plan.
According to your investment capacity and skill, determine the business size. If you are an absolute beginner in this industry, it is advisable to start as small. As your business grows you can scale up the business at any moment in time.
In this business, there is no other ancillary product you can produce. However, you can increase the product range with several other food products. Generally, you need to consider several different aspects of this business. The list includes:
- Executive Summary
- Management Description
- Market Analysis
- Organizing & Management
- Product Line
- Fixed Capital & Working Capital Investment
- Financial Projection
- Funding Request
- Marketing & Sales Promotion Strategy
2. Honey Processing Business Registration & Licensing
Wherever you are starting the business, you have to register the business as per your state law. It hugely depends on the location where you are starting the business. In India, you can register the business with ROC. Otherwise, you can start the business simply as a proprietorship.
As you are dealing with the food item, you must obtain licenses and permissions from the Govt. authority. In India, you have to obtain an FSSAI license from the FSSAI department. In addition, if you want to export honey, you have to obtain the IEC code.
3. Honey Processing Plant Setup
First of all, you have to secure a location for the production unit. Generally, a 1000 Sq Ft area is sufficient for a small-scale processing unit. Additionally, you will need to have a testing laboratory with a unit. However, if you are starting a shoestring budget, then you can consider using other laboratories for testing purposes.
Before finalizing the unit location, check the electricity and water availability. In addition, the location must have an available transport facility. Generally, a honey processing unit includes 4 key modules. These are the collection center, processing zone, bottling with packaging unit, and warehouse.
4. Machinery Required
Some of the major required machines for processing honey are as follows:
- Heating, filtering, and storage tank
- Gravity Clarifiers
- Honey Filters
- Honey Extractors
- Wax Melters
- Draining Trays
- Bottling and Sealing Machine
- Honey Bottling Machines
- Labeling Machines
In addition, you have to procure some measuring and testing equipment.
5. Honey Manufacturing Process
Generally, a modern honey processing plant produces processed honey in an automatic process. The steps include procuring raw honey, filtering, and packaging. However, quality control and standardization of honey are essential for selling in the international market.
For export to European Union (EU) and some other countries, it’s mandatory to control the level of pesticides and insecticidal residue in the finished product. Furthermore, some countries insist on a certificate validating the purchase of honey from a disease-free colony.
6. Cost of Starting a Honey Processing Plant in India
The cost of setting up a honey processing plant will depend on several factors. It includes the size of the plant, production capacity, location, type of equipment, and quality of raw materials.
The major cost components are as follows:
- Land and Factory Building
- Machinery and Equipment
- Raw Materials
- Salary and Wages
- License and Legal Fees
- Marketing & Promotion
On average the cost of starting a small-scale honey processing plant business in India will range from Rs. 25 Lacs to Rs. 1 Crore depending on the size and scale of production.
7. Arrange Funds
Do not forget to apply for a credit card for meeting up short-term business expenses.
8. Marketing & Sales Promotion Strategy
This is one of the most crucial aspects to consider in starting a honey processing business. And to set the goal, you must identify your target demographic. Additionally, you have to concentrate on both retail and institutional selling. Establishing a wide distributor network is just essential in this business. And you also need to offer some schemes to enhance the sale.
A small-scale honey processing business is a lucrative opportunity for new entrepreneurs. However, you must initiate the business in a proper way to get long-term success in this business.