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About Food Franchises

About Food Franchises

By FranchiseKing, Guest Blogger
Published: February 2, 2012 Updated: January 3, 2013

I’d wager that the first thing that comes to mind when you think of franchising is some type of food franchise. I do too.

Most of the food franchises that we tend to think of are almost always in the *fast-casual genre. It’s a huge business sector.

If you’re thinking of becoming the owner of a food franchise, I have a way for you to get a leg up on your search for the right one; become a trend-watcher. For example, did you know that some fast casual franchises are serving, “Mini-treats?” Or, that there’s a new type of family demographic that wants some attention?

There are several things that are taking place right now in the food industry that you need to know about before you even start looking at opportunities. Read about them in this *2012 QSR Trends Report. 

Food Franchise Pros and Cons 


1. Food franchisees fulfill a need

Today’s consumers are time-starved, especially families that have very active children. “Soccer Moms” are a busy bunch; they’re always, as my Mom calls it, “Running and chasing.” Sometimes, there’s just not enough time to go back home to put a full meal together for everyone, which is why fast-casual restaurants are frequented by this demographic.

2. Branding

Consumers are more comfortable spending their money with a known brand, so if you’re thinking about investing in a food franchise, having a well-known brand behind you could be a benefit.

3. Community

As the owner of a food franchise, you can impact your local area in terms of job creation, and tax revenue. There are other opportunities for you to get involved in the community, like sponsoring fund-raising drives for the local schools, and sending unused food items to your local food bank.


1. The hours

As the owner of a food franchise, you’ll be putting in extremely long hours, and I can personally attest to that. I was in the food service industry. I started out as a dishwasher at a busy restaurant when I was 14 years old, and stayed in the business for 15 + years. I held numerous positions in restaurant management, and was even a Maître D in Las Vegas. I know what I’m talking about.

As the owner of a food franchise, you’re going to be at your business all the time. (At first) Now, if you are looking to become a multi-unit food franchise owner, your role will change. You won’t be in one particular location all the time; you’ll rotate. You’re role will be more of a, “manage the manager” one. You’ll also be on the go a lot, scouting out possible new locations as you try to create your little empire. Read what this real-live *multi-unit food franchisee says about the food-service business.

2. The Investment

Franchise start-up and ongoing costs for fast casual food franchises can be on the steep side, especially if you want to own more than one. A typical McDonald’s franchise costs over $1 million. Jimmy John’s start-up costs range from $305,500 – $485,500. (Without the real estate) Maybe you’re interested in opening up a more health conscious food franchise like a Saladworks franchise. Your investment will range from $331,102 – $474,527, plus working capital.

Not all food franchises have an investment in the upper-range of the franchise investment scale. For example, if you’d like to own a Subway franchise, you could be closer to $200,000 in total. It depends on the location.

3. Fads

If you’re not careful, you could end up becoming the owner of a food franchise that was really, really, popular when you first learned about it, but 6 months into your franchise ownership adventure-isn’t. In other words, you bought, “The hottest franchise around” a bit too late. It happens.

Instead of looking for what’s “Hot,” in franchising, try to become more of a futurist. See if you can anticipate what’s coming up the pike. Watch what the big guys are doing. Big name franchises are always testing new products and services out.

Food franchises are here to stay. That’s because they help solve one of the biggest challenges facing all of us; a lack of time. Find a business that solves problems, and you could be on your way to business success.


*Non-US Government links 


(The Franchise King®, Joel Libava, is president of Franchise Selection Specialists Inc. Joel provides franchise advisory services to those interested in exploring franchise ownership. He’s frequently called on by the media for his no-spin insights on the world of franchising, and his 1st book, Become a Franchise Owner! was just published.)   

About the Author:

Joel Libava

Guest Blogger

The Franchise King®, Joel Libava, is the author of Become a Franchise Owner! and recently launched Franchise Business University.