Food Venture Initiative - Iniciativa de Emprendimientos Culinarios

The LEDC Food Venture Initiative is a bilingual program for entrepreneurs in the Washington-Baltimore metropolitan area that offers training and useful connections in order to develop, test and formalize a business idea in the food industry.

Entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to receive valuable training and information from


  • Professional Chefs and Restaurant Consultants
  • Restaurant Managers
  • Restaurant Owners
  • Representatives of Shared Kitchens
  • Business Coaches
  • Small Business Loan Officers
  • Representatives of the Health Department

The Program Includes

  • 7  Workshops covering topics such as finance, marketing, restaurant operation and licensing (18 Hours)
  • Food Manager Course and Certification (16 hours)
  • One-on-one technical assistance (4 Hours)
  • Participation in a tasting event 
  • Financial literacy (2 Hours) and access to a credit building loan**

**Credit Building Loan will be given to eligible participants.

For more information please contact  Omar Velasco - - (202) 540-7405



First Cohort

Application and Registration click here   from June  1st  to August 31st

Workshops See Calendar and Topics

Certification course and test (TBD)

Tasting Event (TBD)




We are looking for candidates to be a part of our first cohort!

Ideal candidates will be:

  • Entrepreneurs looking to start a food business within one year in Washington DC, Maryland or Virginia. 
  • Entrepreneurs seeking to obtain a food license in DC, Maryland or Virginia.
  • All type of food business projects is welcome. Restaurants, Food Truck, Catering Service

Apply Here!

Workshop Calendar

Date Topic
Sept/11  Starting a Food Business  - Steps Overview
Sept/25  Developing the Concept. Menu, Business model
Oct /9  Location and Marketing Strategy
Oct/23  Operating a food business (Hiring, Managing Inventory, Insurance, Key Processes)
Nov/6  Start-up Cost and Financial Projections
Nov/20  Personal Finances and Funding Options
Dec/4  Licensing Process in DC and Maryland
TBD  Food Safety Course
TBD  Food Safety and Food Manager Certification Test


For more information please contact  Omar Velasco - - (202) 540-7405