Business Overview

Many people love pasta and eat it regularly. While much of the pasta consumed is commercially made “dry pasta” (e.g. Barilla brand pasta), the demand for artisan “fresh pasta” is growing. From 2012 to 2016, unit sales of fresh pasta grew 20 percent and revenue was up 25 percent.

With sustained growth and no single dominant brand, now is an excellent time to start a business that makes fresh pasta. Italian pastas are the most well-known and popular, but pasta businesses can also specialize in egg noodles or other types of pasta.

Who is this business right for?

Anyone who likes cooking and is able to connect with people may enjoy running a pasta business. A passion for cooking will help business owners get through the many days that they spend at the stove making pasta, and having people skills will make it easy for business owners to share their enthusiasm for pasta with others.

What happens during a typical day at a pasta business?

A typical day at a pasta business may be spent in the kitchen or out selling.

When in the kitchen, business owners spend a lot of time prepping ingredients, actually making the pasta, and packaging it. They must, of course, clean up once finished.

When out selling, business owners spend a lot of time talking with other people about pasta. Fresh pasta typically sells for more than commercial pasta does, so it’s necessary to educate customers on why this type of pasta is worth the added cost.

What is the target market?

The target market for a pasta business tends to be foodies who have some discretionary income. Because fresh pasta commands a higher price than dry pasta, the people who buy it usually appreciate good food and are at least somewhat affluent.

How does a pasta business make money?

Pasta businesses make money by selling pasta. Noodles are typically sold by weight, and they may be sold to retail or wholesale customers.

What is the growth potential for a pasta business?

A fresh pasta business may remain a small operation run by just the business owner, or it can grow to become a large company. For example, Fresh Pasta Delights is a business in Dallas-Fort Worth that has been operating for more than 30 years and continues to primarily serve the metroplex area. In contrast, RP’s Pasta Company has been in business about a decade less but sells throughout North America.