Food and Beverage Distributors and Wholesalers in Ohio Key Terms

Know important concepts when dealing with Ohio food and beverage distributors and wholesalers

When you are ready to begin purchasing from Ohio food and beverage distributors and wholesalers, consider where you will buy your produce. Customers look for the freshest produce and meats, so finding Ohio-based distributors and wholesalers not only means faster service, but perishable products will usually be fresher. Check into Community Supported Agriculture distributors for top-quality seasonal produce.

When you are dealing with food and beverage distributors and wholesalers in Ohio, you need to be aware of state regulations to be sure you are operating within the law. Know what licenses and permits you need to operate your grocery, convenience store, or restaurant. Also be aware of professional organizations that support food industry professionals.

Ohio Department of Health

Ohio Department of Health oversees food safety for the state. The department provides training, announces food recalls, and offers guidance and technical assistance to those in the food industry.
Ohio Department of Health lists some of the food safety areas that are their jurisdiction and has links to state food codes.

Three-tier system

Ohio law requires beer to pass through a three-tier system--brewery, distributor and retailer--to encourage competition and to reduce price fixing and excessive consumption. Because each tier must be independent, the system functions as a form of anti-trust law.
Heidelberg Distributing discusses the three-tier system and other Ohio regulations on alcohol sales.

Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT)

The Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT), based in Ohio, offers a variety of programs and resources for food industry professionals. One of their initiatives is training businesses in the best food safety practices.
The Center for Innovative Food Technology discusses food safety and explains the programs they offer.

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

Ohio has many farms that participate in Community Supported Agriculture. The farms act as distributors to local customers, proving fresh produce in season. While many of the people who use CSAs are individual consumers, it can be a good source for wholesalers, distributors and restaurants who are looking for top-quality produce.
Meadow Rise Farm in Ohio discusses the advantages of buying from Ohio CSAs.


Often when you order a product, the distributor or wholesaler may impose an MOQ, or minimum order quantity. For Ohio stores doing a small business or needing to restock only a few items, this can pose a problem. Ordering in bulk often cuts costs, but if you don't have the storage space or turnover to support large quantity orders, look for distributors or wholesalers who do not require MOQs.
For an explanation of MOQ, visit

Northwest Ohio Green Products Center

Northwest Ohio Green Products Center offers support to food businesses that want to go green. They provide technical assistance, business expertise and other resources to those who want to use bio-based resources or other eco-friendly products.
Northwest Ohio Green Products Center discusses their support to the food industry and lists the benefits of going green.

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