The Rutgers Food Innovation Center (FIC) is not for every company. Admission is dependent upon the following requirements being met:
- Client must possess the potential to benefit from a relationship with the Food Innovation Center
- Client must agree to business and technical mentoring (this includes an initial product / process review, bench scale testing, prototyping, and food safety assessment by Rutgers FIC staff)
- Client must be willing and able to meet all applicable requirements of the FDA or USDA and Rutgers FIC policies and procedures regarding safe production of food while in our facility
- Client must complete all paperwork required for documenting traceability of all ingredients and packaging materials through finished product prior to leaving the facility on any production date or removing product from our premises
- Client must possess liability insurance prior to food or beverage production
- Client must complete our free Food Safety Training, pass a 20 question exam on Food Safety, and acknowledge receipt of GMP and Adverse Health policies prior to food or beverage production
- Though not required, strong preference is given to clients who have a business plan (More information on creating your business plan is available here)
Please note that the Rutgers Food Innovation Center adheres to the standards and
requirements set forth by local, state and federal agencies for food
safety and quality. All products manufactured in the Center must meet these standards.
After submitting your initial questionnaire, you will receive an email acknowledging its receipt. Within 10 business days you will be contacted by a staff member from the Rutgers Food Innovation Center to further discuss the details of your project. Once approved, you will begin by meeting with staff members to participate in an initial needs assessment followed by the creation of a mutually agreed upon plan of action for your project.
In order for the management of the Rutgers Food Innovation Center to track progress of tenants, companies will be asked to provide the following information annually:
- Financial Statements – the client company shall provide the Rutgers Food Innovation Center with “bookkeeper-prepared” quality quarterly financial statements. An annual financial summary will also be required.
- The company shall also provide detailed periodic information on the employees, including the number and names of employees, the titles and positions of each employee and the names and positions of the company’s officers and Board members as necessary, but not less than annually.
- The company shall hold informal meetings with the professional staff of the Rutgers Food Innovation Center at mutually agreed upon intervals.
- Should a tenant fall seriously behind its scheduled action plan, the company will be required to meet with the Rutgers Food Innovation Center to discuss reasons for the delay and remedial solutions.
- Hours: Normal working hours are 8 am to 5 pm. Additional hours may be discussed as necessary.
- Payments: Clients are invoiced for Business & Technical Mentoring services at the beginning of the month and for food processing services at the conclusion of each individual production run. Invoice must be paid in full before any product is removed from the Center.
- Facility Use Agreement: Each tenant will be required to sign a standard Facility Use Agreement with the Rutgers Food Innovation Center which defines obligations of both the tenant and the Center’s management regarding space and its modifications, services, and equipment to be provided and cost for same.