COMO Cooks Shared Commercial Kitchen

COMO cooks banner with dark blue text.

The Loop CID and REDI are proud to announce that CoMo Cooks, a shared commercial Kitchen at Mizzou North, has received an operating permit from the Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services and is now officially open for business.

CoMo Cooks will give all cooks a chance to turn their recipes into a business reality, regardless of background, income, or status. The goal is to increase entrepreneurial success by providing accessible, inclusive, and affordable kitchen space for starting and expanding local food-based businesses. Additional support provided by REDI and The Loop CID in the form of business coaching, shared branding, pop-ups and other promotions will help local food entrepreneurs succeed.

The CoMo Cooks project will benefit the community by:

• Encouraging the growth of local food entrepreneurs by reducing barriers and creating opportunities for those without easy access to a commercial kitchen, including those who have been impacted by racial, social, and economic inequality.

• Supporting local and regional farmers by providing cost-effective space to produce value-added products.

• Increasing the economic vitality of the Business Loop by developing a catalytic project that can spur new food-based businesses along the corridor.

• Creating quality jobs that support upward economic mobility for the residents of Columbia and Boone County.

• Providing a space that can be used in the future for business incubation, workforce development, food safety classes, and other training opportunities.

Recognizing that the local community of makers, artisans, crafters, and cooks has a significant impact on our economy, REDI and The Loop CID teamed up to receive one of six national grants designed to help Columbia identify and support local, small-scale manufacturing along the Business Loop Corridor. This shared kitchen was a direct recommendation of that public visioning process and is even more critical today given the impact of COVID-19 on the local economy.

CoMo Cooks Kitchen Manager Bryan Maness, a restaurant industry professional with over 20 years of experience in kitchen management and project launches, said, “There’s a huge need for a shared commercial kitchen here in Columbia— food-based businesses face significant start up hurdles because outfitting a kitchen is such a financial barrier. Como Cooks can now help them grow by offering an affordable kitchen combined with business support.”

The kitchen offers tiered memberships starting at 10 hours a month with hourly fees starting at $15/hour. Potential clients interested in using the kitchen can contact

Bryan Maness at bryan@comocooks.com.

To learn more about the kitchen and to apply to use the kitchen, visit https://cre8como.com/como-cooks/

Take a virtual tour of the kitchen at https://theloopcomo.com/take-a-virtual-kitchen-tour/.