Storage–that’s been the hardest thing for Khalila Arthur to come by through the growth of her sweet corn pudding business, Khalila’s Corn Krush.
Cottage-industry laws in New Jersey prohibit her and other makers from running a food business out of her house, even if it’s just using her freezer as storage. Now, Pilotworks, a commercial kitchen and culinary incubator that opened in Newark on Thursday, offers foodie entrepreneurs plenty of storage space.
The 10,000-square-foot facility offers dry, frozen and cold storage. It also has 12 decked-out kitchens and a large co-working space for business needs outside of the kitchen.
“Other commercial kitchens will let you use their space, but they say, ‘Sorry, we don’t have any storage,’” Arthur said. “[My business partner and I] would have to leave the kitchen and go straight to our events because we couldn’t store anything.”
Hundreds foodies showed up to the 550 Broad St. facility’s grand opening to explore the kitchen space and try Newark’s newest foods.
Because members rent the space on an hourly basis, Pilotworks can sustain over 100 members at once. Its services also include a mentorship network, educational programming and distribution services.
“We have a pretty rigorous mentorship program and put on events to help people begin to run or continue to run a business,” Pilotworks CEO Nick Devane said. “Accounting, social media strategy, fundraising, legal, sourcing, branding—all those things. We just want to help them succeed.”