Top tips: How to open a butcher shop Posted by Bulman Products, 9th March 2018

While supermarket deli counters have expanded into the meat market in recent years, loyal customers still value traditional experience at the local butcher shops. Opening a butcher shop, with the right planning and attention to details, can put a nostalgic icon to your brand and serve your customers with a sustainable and reliable source of daily protein.

You are already working in the meat industry or in a butcher shop. You are thinking of either taking over a business or opening a butcher shop on your own. Consider our top tips on how to open a butcher shop as you get started.

Where will you be located?

The competitions around you If you will be competing against an established local butcher who has a large base of loyal customers, your life will not be easy.

Neighbourhood catchment area Is the area well-populated, with higher percentage of families and an efficient household income?

Rent prices Rent prices in such a neighbourhood will be higher. You need to consider if this will be balanced out with your expected number of customers and their level of meat consumption.

What will you sell?

It’s unlikely you will be able to compete with the prices at national supermarket chains. You will need to make sure you stand out from the crowd.

  • People in your local community have the need and the money to visit a butcher shop, on the value you added in the form of reliable meat resource, variety and superior quality of products and expertise.
  • You sell things people can’t get from a supermarket. You may want to offer a range of fresh red meat – pork, beef, lamb – as well as poultry and perhaps game. You may also want to consider adding a variety of meat products, such as pork pies and scotch eggs – and even complementary products, such as sauces and chutney.
  • You have the knowledge and expertise to make suggestions to customers who are looking to try out new recipes, those who are on a mission to pull off a dinner event, or even the folks who are looking to put something on their dinner tables for a weeknight.

What butcher tools will you need?

Before you can open your butcher shop, you need to consider what are the essential butcher tools to put in order. Here’s a butcher shop equipment list for you:

Knives, cut-resistant gloves and cutting board

You will need a well-rounded set of cutleries and implement safe cutting practices.

Meat processing equipment and food scales

Juicy burgers and sausages are always popular. Meat processing equipment help grind the meat flat in seconds and food scales show your customer they are getting their money’s worth.

Walk-in cooler and refrigerated display case

A walk-in-cooler will keep your products safely stored. A refrigerated display case lets you show off your cuts to your customer and attracts them to make last-minute impulse purchases.

Classic wire shelving

A well-organised storage setup help you stay within hygiene guidelines and keep your customers safe.

Meat wrapping paper and paper dispenser

All types of food-wrapping paper can be purchased in rolls – for busy butchers to improve food wrapping speed and convenience, this is a far more convenient option than sheets, which take up lots of space, and get scuffed and ruined easily. Our Bulman Products All-in-One stainless-steel paper dispenser is a brilliant piece of equipment for a butcher shop. Some of its (many!) advantages:

  • It can be wall or worksurface mounted
  • It allows you to cut food-wrapping paper quickly and gives you a neat, professional finish
  • It stores and dispenses food-wrapping paper rolls without taking up a lot of space
  • It’s clean and hygienic

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