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Black Sheep Black Sheep is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London Zone 2
Posts: 142
Does any body know anything about hot dogs?

Well I spend a day with a business yesterday I thought I was going to invest only to find out that working in an office and selling while owning my own biz would be the worst thing I could ever do, and under stament.

I have now gone back to my original idea... hot dogs


I have been researching all day and have come up with a push trike hot dog cart like the ice cream ones but hot dogs cost about £2500 and then supplies but would be interested to know if anyone has any knowledge of catering outside?

As my dad always says location location location

Well with it being a cart I think I could get away with moving round central London on the hoof like sandwich delivery but could always revert to a market pitch if need be then there are events like football matches and so on.

So what do you think any ideas? Or criticism?
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fish boy fish boy is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: stonehaven
Posts: 6
hi,
i have a fish and chip shop in stonehaven near aberdeen and i am the uk no1 young fish frier 2002/2003.
if you are wanting to sell hot dogs in the street you will have to get a licence and probably a pitch and you will have to pay for both you will not be allowed to sell any where that you want and definatly not at footy matches as the people that sell there have bid big monay to get there.
the best thing to do is go and see your local council as they will tell you the laws of the area that you are in and give you a good insite of what is ahead.
there is good monay in hot dogs bud it gets cold in the winter and wet.
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joshdhaliwal's Avatar joshdhaliwal joshdhaliwal is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Covent Garden, London
Posts: 97
Just a word of warning

Maybe this is just TV stuff but isn't the hot dog business run a bit like a cartel, not disimilar to the ice-cream business. Where pitches are heavily protected and sometimes run by quite shady and unscrupulous characters with little regard for hygience, licensing and not averse to using violence.
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Black Sheep Black Sheep is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London Zone 2
Posts: 142
update

Well i have worked out i need to sell about 30 hot dogs a day 5 days a week to earn what i am earning now as well as 10 cans.

Have got the bike sorted and have seen severall companies about having the box made.

Here are a few pictures of the bike.






Have contaced westminster council about trading on their markets and they seem quite happy but my only concern is being able to sell enough hot dogs, I am prepared to work hard and long hours but i can either see me falling flat on my face or it running away with it self.

So whats your view do you think i could sell 30 hot dogs a day in central london with a modern professional loooking hot dog unit?


Black Sheep

aka Rob
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kris_leeds's Avatar kris_leeds kris_leeds is offline
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Join Date: May 2002
Location: Doncaster, Yorkshire
Posts: 176
I dunno if this will help of not, but...

In Doncaster their is a hotdog bloke, usually selling hotdogs at night - basic, just medium and large, no frills or fancy menu. He sets up outside the most popular nightclub, selling his hotdogs at £2 and £3. it might seem a little expensive, but people leave the nightclub, feeling hungry, a hotdog is easy to get, no queues of anything, i bet he his making quite a bit of cash!

an exaple of location, location, and err, praying on the drunk? lol
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bedazzle bedazzle is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 96
Brilliant, 30 isn't really that many if you've hitting the right place at the right time of day, go for it i'd say, keep us informed of how things go.
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richardwhulme richardwhulme is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33
hot dogs

Hi,

there are a number of companies who supply hot dog carts based on USA Models they cost about £4500.

if you try to trade in a city centre the council will require you to get a street trading license - cost anywhere from £0-£1000 pa.

I would like to know how you have worked out how many dogs to sell per day - costings etc...

hope this helps

cheers

rick
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Black Sheep Black Sheep is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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Well here is a brief example although i have yet to do a full set of figures.

I have gathered the information from a few sources but one of the main ones is from an information pack have sent me westlers

I am not sure weather i should just sell a quality jumbo hot dog or also sell another hot dog that is a bit tastier if you see what i mean.

The Jumbo is 7 and a half inches long

Hot Dog Cost 35p (each including delivery)
Bread Roll 11p
Sauce 10p
Serviette 1p
Onions 6p

Total Cost 63p (and i have raised this to 75p just to be sure)

Sale Price £2.50 (does this sound like a fair price for a healthy hot dog?

Profit £1.75

POR % 70%

But then i have other cost such as:

Market fees £113.35 a week (yikes but that is for a pitch in central SOHO on berwick street and that is for 7 days)

£5440 per 11 month year


Storage £101.05 for 24 hour storage every month.

£1321.26 for 12 months storage but i get further discounts for using them that long

Gas I am not sure about this and this is just a guess untill i speak to a few people, but say £15 per week

£720 a year for propane.

and there are a few others but will leave them out as i am just doing estimates at the moment.

But then i have other profit centres like

Crisps

Cost ( i will find out any ideas per bag?)
Sale Price 50p

Drinks (cans and water from a cool box in summer so they are nice and cold)

Cost 20p
Sale Price £1 or perhaps 75p or even 60p

Chocolate Bars

Cost ?
Sale Price 40p or 50p





So lets work of hot dogs alone.

at £1.75 profit each if i sell x per day as an average, asuming working 6 days per week and 11 months per year.

Fixed cost per year, and i have added 5% extar just in case, and it is just under £8000 a year cost (yikes again)

25

£43.75 per day
£262.5 per week
£12,600 per year

and then fixed costs of

£8000 leaving £4,600


50

£87.50 per day
£525 per week
£25,200 per year

and then fixed costs of

£8000 leaving £17,200

75

£131,25 per day
£787.50 per week
£37,800 per year

and then fixed costs of

£8000 leaving £29,800

i was not going to do 100 but i like the way these number are staking up and it has just occered to me that the gas will stay the same no matter how many hot dogs i sell as long as it is in the same time span as it will be running all day anyway.

100

£175 per day
£1050 per week
£50,400 per year

and then fixed costs of

£8000 leaving £42,400

And there will be some big events in london like notting hill carnival marathon and so on, but i would like to have a regular spot where people come back again and again.

Thanks for all your advice and ideas.

And do you think the smell of onions will attarct people and if so how can a pump it all around SOHO
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richardwhulme richardwhulme is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33
hot dogs

HI,

makes intersting reading, how many dogs / buns / drinks do you think your cart / bike will carry? does it have a fridge etc..

sounds good, I would look at rollover hot dogs aswell and maybe do a taste test on a couple of brands.

one last point there are over 400 hot dog stands in moscow, formrly USSR and they turnover $25,000 per month!!!!

cheers

rick
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Rhys's Avatar Rhys Rhys is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Cardiff
Posts: 190
I'd say go for it. 30 hot dogs a day doesn't sound that much but like someone said you will need to get your location right. And remember if things get bad then pray on the drunk!
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Black Sheep Black Sheep is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London Zone 2
Posts: 142
Thanks

Well one of the reasons i am going to have the cart built my self is so i can make it the most efficient possible, and have looked at severall already on the market in the uk and states so i can make a super hot dog cart.

I am building as much space into the cart as possible but in the front of the unit i am aiming to be able to store enough supplies for at least 200 hot dogs.

As for drinks i think i will have a huge cool box that i can put on the top of the box while moving then put on the floor when i get to my spot or have a rack made over the rear wheel to carry two normal size cool boxes,

And if i ever need more space for a large event or so on i can get a trailer for the bike although this will make it a little more difficult to move!

As for the dogs one of the reasons for looking at westlers so closley is they have a huge cut of the uk market and the hot dogs can be stored at room tempreature when in the tin, they come in tins of 25 so one tin is the most i will ever waste, and i can put those in the fridge overnight for the next day no problems.

Wow $25,000 o month i just london is that hungry.

Rollover is one of the companies i am looking at although they want lots of money for a franchise!
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richardwhulme richardwhulme is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33
hot dogs

Yeh,
rollover want £2500 just to have a chat!!!

remember if you are designing your own cart that it does have to be up to uk food spec as dictated by local councils and also that the dog carts in the us are the best because they have evolved over 100 years of use, which is why everyone copies them.

keep us informed, but looking good so far.

cheers

rick
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fish boy fish boy is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: stonehaven
Posts: 6
well i agree with others i would by a purpose built cart as the companys that make them have been doinig this for years and they will comply with food laws. and lets face it to convert your cart will cost a pritty penny and thats is not what you do for a living let someone that deals in this do it wright as it could become costly and you also need the correct image that will sell the hot dogs in its own.
i have used westlers for about 10 years know and the are a v good dog and that is the brand that sells the most in this country.
the buns good makes are euro buns and kara they will cost 15p each but why not use a baget and do what the other countrys do and stab the baget and put the sauce in and then the hot dog, this will cost more but you will sell more as they are tastier and less messy fot the custemer.
you said the most you would have to through out is 1 tin well that costs £9 well that every day for 300 days will cost you £2700 and 10 buns at 0.15 will cost you £450
total £3150 a lot of money and that is from your profit.
because the cart is not refrigarated you will have to chuck out opened tins and rolls every day.

i think that your gas bill is far to low as well you will need to find out about that.
i noticed that you are trading for 11 months a year remember it rains , snows , sick days , holidays, other commitments and if you are working at nights you will have no social life and you need to keep in touch with family and friends or it gets very hard and lonaly.
i think if you do it properly you will sell more than you think you will but it is not easy and you need to get some banter going with the custemer as the will come back if they enjoyed the food and the company while waiting.
cheers
calum
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joshdhaliwal's Avatar joshdhaliwal joshdhaliwal is offline
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Location: Covent Garden, London
Posts: 97
Does any body know anything about hot dogs?

Have you factored in costs for storage of food supplies and storage for your cart? and of course travel ferrying your cart to and from location. And possibly congestion charging?
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fish boy fish boy is offline
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Location: stonehaven
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you will also needto prep your onions and if you do this at home you will need a food safety ticket for your house as if you store the products at home i/e the buns in the freezer and this becomes a hassle you dont have to but if you get caught it will be costly.
and in this day and age if you have food to sell you will need temprature logs for the raw food , frozen foods, and the hot food that you sell.
and i would advice you that you will need insurance for public liabiltys as if you give someone food poising or something along them lines it will finish you and there are funny people out there that will try anything for money for free
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