I've been making alcohol cookies in my kitchen at home since 2017, a variety of delicious butter biscuits, topped with alcohol icing. With the alcohol icing added after baking, the biscuits keep the full boozy flavours.
The vast majority of cookies go to customers in the USA, buying via my website,boozybiccies.com. People love the cookies, with many repeat customers, but I've only been doing it part time.
In July this year I was made redundant due to Covid-19, while working for an aircraft seat manufacturer. I started making the cookies full-time and supplied two shops to get started. The first shop sold out in a week and ordered 350 boxes, plus more for a new whiskey cookie that's due out in November.
The problem now is, I can't expand without machinery to make it profitable. To expand the business, I need $39,000 for a cookie moulding machine, ovens, an icing machine and a bagging machine. So far I have raised $13,000 with a loan from my bank, but I need the remaining $26,000 for the bagging machine.
The current process for making the cookies (or biscuits as they're known here in Ireland), is to mix the dough in my Kenwood mixer, hand roll it with a rolling pin, cut out the cookies and bake them in my home oven, with three trays at a time (that's 63 cookies every 20 minutes).
The process works well and has allowed me to produce thousands of cookies so far, but I can't scale up to the tens of thousands of cookies needed.
US shops also want to import the cookies in bulk. I have arranged for a US agent, for importing and registration with the FDA, but with all the paperwork in place, I can't actually make the cookies without the machines.
The $10,000 raised so far will go into fitting out the manufacturing space and the production machinery:
Cookie moulder (also known as a rotary moulder): $4,000 (second hand, refurbished)
Commercial Oven: $1,300 (new)
Icing Machine: $1700 (new)
Hand washing, utilities, office $4,000 (second hand equipment and fixtures)
The remaining $26,000, hopefully raised here, will purchase a flow wrapper. This will allow me to bag the current cookies in huge numbers, as well as expand the business to a new type of cookie for the hospitality trade, which are packed in much smaller bags.
As much of the packaging as possible, is recyclable or biodegradable, as well as using a card for the boxes from sustainable sources. My goal is to have 100% of the packaging recyclable and/or biodegradable in 2021. To make this happen I have to order in bulk to cover the higher prices of sustainable materials.
The current range of cookies include Beer, Buckfast, Prosecco, Rum and Vodka. Whiskey cookies are coming in November 2020 and gin cookies and Irish stout cookies are in testing for 2021. Most of the cookies made are from suggestions by cookie lovers like yourself and I really hope to build the alcohol cookie factory in November 2020. The best part is, if you make a donation with a cookie reward, you'll get to enjoy the delicious cookies, as well as help build the factory, right here in Ireland!