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Food & Drink

Bakers can rise in Pittsburgh incubator, nation's first

Mary Pickels
| Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018, 10:24 a.m.
The Bakery Society Pittsburgh has formed to offer incubator space, entrepreneurial training and support to aspiring bakery operators.
Bakery Society Pittsburgh via Facebook
The Bakery Society Pittsburgh has formed to offer incubator space, entrepreneurial training and support to aspiring bakery operators.
A sweet opportunity awaits professional and hobbyist bakers through the newly launched Bakery Society Pittsburgh in Mt. Oliver.
A sweet opportunity awaits professional and hobbyist bakers through the newly launched Bakery Society Pittsburgh in Mt. Oliver.

Those who enjoy getting elbow deep in dough, watching a loaf of bread rise or loading up a pastry bag are just who The Bakery Society Pittsburgh is looking for as it prepares a spring launch.

Located in Mt. Oliver, the society is inviting bakers of all levels to participate in what it is calling the first bakery incubator in America.

Plans include providing entrepreneurial training and support to individuals looking to develop an aspiring bakery business, as well as offering opportunities to baking hobbyists to share their products and expertise, according to a news release.

The society is an initiative of Economic Development South, which provides economic development strategy and support to the Mt. Oliver-Knoxville area through a state tax credit program.

Direct society funding is coming from the Pittsburgh philanthropic community, with the Hillman Foundation providing major support.

The society will be housed in the former Kullman's Bakery, 225 Brownsville Road, which closed in 2014 after nearly 60 years of operation.

The vacant storefront is undergoing rehab, with plans for a May opening, the release notes.

Three types of bakers are sought for this new program:

• Bakers-in-residence, an intensive 18-month incubation period to refine technical skills and receive ongoing training in marketing and financial skills leading to creation of their own regional businesses.

• Tenant bakers, who will work with experienced bakers to advertise their products to the South Hills and receive a percentage of profits.

• Community bakers, who will be provided access to space and equipment, along with technical skill assistance, as a possible step towards the baker-in-residence position.

Applications for all positions will be accepted on a rolling basis, with the first cohort deadline on Feb. 16. Applications are available on the society website.

Details: tbspgh.com

Mary Pickels is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-836-5401 or mpickels@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MaryPickels.

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