5 days a week, Beverly Francis cooks meals for small children in daycare facilities throughout the Treasure Coast. On weekends, she spices things up with a exclusive-situations food items truck that serves hen curry, jalapeno meatballs and other Haitian-Caribbean favorites. 

She’s capable to do it all by acquiring accessibility to a professionally equipped commercial kitchen, which she rents for $17 an hour. She’s just one of about two dozen food business owners who share house at the Sunshine Kitchen co-op in St. Lucie County.

 “It would charge us perfectly above $200,000 for the state-of-the-art machines they have obtainable for us,” claimed Francis, co-owner of Bee’s Kitchen and Catering with her fiance, Stutson Gary.

That was the concept at the rear of Sunshine Kitchen area, mentioned Regina McCants, coordinator for the 10,000-square-foot food company incubator owned by St. Lucie County, which is section of the Treasure Coastline Investigation Park off Rock Road west of Fort Pierce. 

Regina McCants, coordinator at the Treasure Coast Research Park's Sunshine Kitchen in St. Lucie County.

Sunshine Kitchen

The kitchen, which opened in 2018, provides stoves, kitchen devices such as meat slicers, food items preparation parts, storage place and place of work place for its tenants.

The county paid out $109,016 to run the kitchen area in fiscal 12 months 2020, partially offset by $74,617 in profits produced from the tenants’ lease payments.                    

The tenants spend a $250 a person-time deposit, then $17 an hour for the scheduled-time use of the facility, McCants explained. With two kitchens obtainable, the tenants use a web page to pencil in the time they want and agree to cleanse up properly for the team that follows.

The kitchen included COVID-19 precautions past calendar year, necessitating masks and temperature checks for everyone moving into the facility. 

The thought for the kitchen area was dependent on office environment incubators, where by a number of startup companies share a spot and get resource aid there, McCants reported. The county took the concept, but utilized it to the food items marketplace. 

Beverly Francis (left), co-owner of Bee's Kitchen & Catering, along with fiance Stutson Gary prepare meals for local Treasure Coast daycares on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, at Sunshine Kitchen, a co-op commercial kitchen in St. Lucie County. The large professionally equipped kitchen allows the couple to work on a larger scale and has allowed them to network with other businesses.

Can they stand the heat? 

Francis needed to pursue her really like of cooking and offer accredited catering for weddings and unique events for her fellow Haitian Us residents on the Treasure Coast. 

“A great deal of men and women imagine they can prepare dinner, but they can arrive listed here, examination their product or service and see if they can build it to anything that they can just take out on their own,” McCants explained.