Glo Bakery Shipping Updates!

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I’m so tired I can barely find the mojo to type this post! Please forgive me, but I am about to fall over. And my day isn’t near done yet!

Earlier this week, I promised you an update about Glo Bakery US shipping, so without further ado…

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Healthy Living Summit

When Caitlin emailed me asking me to donate Glo Bars to her charity bake sale she was hosting at the Healthy Living Summit, I knew I had to be a part of it. As you know, I am a huge supporter of cancer charities! All profits of the bake sale will go toward the The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in honour of her friend who was recently diagnosed.

So while I am unable to go to the Healthy Living Summit, I knew my Glo Bars could! And raise some awesome money for research.

I am donating 10 each of my favourite Glo Bars:

  • Heaven (Carob Brownie Bomb)
  • Revive (Chocolate peanut butter)

And a new bar that I made today and instantly fell in love with:

  • Awake (Coffee)

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I also designed some fancy new labels! I am using the coloured lines to distinguish the bars.

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I am in love with this coffee Glo Bar- and I don’t even like coffee!

Snazzy, eh?

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I am also donating about 140 Classic Glo Bars for the Healthy Living Summit Swag bags!

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I am almost ready to ship. I just need to prepare the documents for international shipping. This is the process I like the least out of everything I do.

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US Launch Preparation:

I thought this would be a good info session for those of you who are curious as to why it is taking me so long to open up to US shipping! :) I hope this helps clarify everything I have been doing to make this possible. I really am not slacking- I swear! haha

Shipping food to the US is a huge undertaking; something I never even thought about until I received my first package sent back to me because it ‘didn’t pass’ customs! Never fun.

The first thing I had to do is research, and lots of it. Unfortunately, there was no clear guide on shipping food to the US. Only a tons of scattered documents and many calls to government agencies that were not helpful. You’d think there would be a clear cut guide to this by now, but what I found was that the info was all over the place.

Here is a snippet of what I had to do:

1) Research Canadian AND US government guidelines for food exportation and importation, respectively.

2) Research FDA Product Codes and Harmonized System codes for classifying product.

3) Apply for a DHHS/FDA Food Facility Registration Number. This number has to be on every single invoice I ship.

4) Learn how to invoice for US shipments (there are different things required on the slip for US).

5) Research FDA Prior Notice of Imported Foods. I have to file a prior notice online before every single US shipment that I do. This eats up tons of time and is quite annoying. This took a while and many, many trials. The first few times I filled one out it took me 45 minutes because it is so complex and detailed. The Prior Notice basically notifies customs that I have a food shipment approaching customs. In other words, it says to customs agents, ‘Yo, I have 50 Glo Bars heading your way’, if only it were that easy though. They need to know everything from product codes, to ingredients, to sizes, quantities, weights, unit weights, packaging material, Food facility registration, Business info, Manufacturer info, etc!

6) I had to research various postal companies to find out where I could get the best bang for my customer’s buck. I researched Canada Post, Fed Ex, USPS, among others. Canada Post came out on top for the type of business I am doing with them.

7) Other things too scattered to list!

What I have to do:

8.) Keep package stalking my US shipments and get a general timeframe that customs keeps the package. The first one was 3 days in customs. I am awaiting the other two. I’d like to have an average if possible so my customers know what to expect.

9) I want to implement, with Eric’s help, and online shopping cart (+ shipping selector tool) on my Glo Bakery website. This will minimize my own administrative work tremendously. I’d like to have this in place before US shipping launch, or I don’t see myself being able to handle all the admin work on my own. Right now the process I am doing it, is extremely time consuming and inefficient. Three cheers for technology! ;)

10) Pre-orders: Once I have my online shopping cart in place, I will be opening up for pre-orders from US customers. This pre-order opportunity will last about two weeks prior to the actual launch date. It will allow me to gauge my orders and plan in advance so everything is streamlined for the opening day.

11) Finish calculating all nutritional information on bars. I definitely want this done before opening up US shipping. While it is not required of me to have the nutritional info on the label (small businesses are not required), I still want the info up on my website because I know it means a lot to people to be able to see the stats.

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Whew! That was almost therapeutic typing out!

Some days I feel like I am not making progress and I am stalled, but reading over everything is showing me what a large scale process this has been.

So please rest assured that I am working around the clock to get these bars to you! I am *hoping* hoping, hoping that I can be ready to open up pre-orders mid-August. Let’s keep our fingers crossed! :D

And now for a poll for the three charity bar donations:

 

I also ALWAYS welcome any suggestions you have!

I’m going to make a late dinner now (hubby just got home late) and then I have another order to start tonight to deliver tomorrow. I have a feeling this week is going to fly by!

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{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

Lainie August 4, 2009

I can’t believe how hard it is to ship to the U.S.! I give you credit for taking the time to research and doing it…I probably would’ve gotten frustrated and given up ;) Sorry to hear you’re so tired – hope ou get some good sleep tonight!

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jessinnyc August 4, 2009

Wow, that is a lot of work. I imagine you’ve spent many a frustrated hour working diligently to get your bars to the States. I admire your hard work and tenacity!

Looking forward to seeing your bars in person at the Healthy Living Summit!

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A August 4, 2009

Eeek, i’m so excited about US shipment!

And it’s good that you’re including the nutrition info because i bet the “small business” exemption will not apply for too long — soon, you’ll be opening Glo branches all over the states and won’t be such a small business!

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Karen August 4, 2009

That does sound like a huge undertaking! I am anxiously awaiting being able to order some Glo bars though – every picture you post of them and description I’ve read on your bakery website looks divine! I am a bar addict so I can’t wait to try yours!

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Rebeca August 4, 2009

1. Angela you are amazingly generous. Wow. That’s incredible. I wish I was going to the summit even more now!

2. That’s pretty intense… I’ll stop hounding you on Twitter now (haha.

3. Girl, you need to take a rest- go to bed early- remember part of being healthy is knowing when to take a breather!

Take care of yourself!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 4, 2009

Rebeca- lol…no one is hounding me or bothering me by ANY means. I am just as excited as you are!

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Spotty Prep August 4, 2009

Oh no, what a headache customs is! Best wishes for a good rest tonight!

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Sarah August 4, 2009

Get yourself some rest girl, you’ve been working hard!

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valerie August 4, 2009

As soon as you start shipping to the U.S., I will start ordering! Good luck!

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Joanna August 4, 2009

I’m sorry for all your trouble and all of my relentless twitters to you about your U.S.A. launch.

Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help.

Cheers,
Joanna

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haya (living and learning) August 4, 2009

oh my! you have made TONS of progress. i remember back in the winter, when you had this little idea and you started with nothing, and you have grown and grown and grown. it’s amazing!
can’t wait to taste your bars!

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Pam (Highway to Health) August 4, 2009

Wow! You are so generous to donate all of those bars! I really admire all of your hard work and dedication to this. It sound like dealing with the government is a job all in it’s own!!

Make sure to get some sleep between all of your work!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) August 4, 2009

Joanna- no need to say sorry silly!! :) I love everyone’s enthusiasm.

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Paige August 4, 2009

You are such a hard worker, girlie! This will all pay off. You are so determined and persistant:D

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Shelby August 4, 2009

I am so excited about Glo Bars coming to the US!!!

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Laura August 4, 2009

Wow, you’ve gone through a lot to be able to ship to us Yankees :-) Congrats on all of your hard work so far, and THANK YOU! I can’t wait to try out Glo Bars.

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Kelsey August 4, 2009

i love reading all about the path you and the bakery have to take to become a successful business. i never really thought about all the work it takes, especially for a such a small business, to ship to other countries! still, i can’t wait til you can ship to the US with confidence and once you do, you know i’ll be buying some glo bars :D

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Rosey Rebecca August 4, 2009

I can’t wait until you can ship to the US! I’m ordering three of everything when you do!

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Sheri August 4, 2009

WOW Angela you ROCK! That is heck of a load of bars! Plus they look so yummy! Really all your hard work will pay off for sure. I am going to have to order myself some of your bars to try one of these days!

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Leanne August 4, 2009

Wow… I have been reading your posts quietly for a while now.

Sometimes just reading your posts makes me tired lol.

You are amazing!!

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Sana August 4, 2009

WOW…that is a LOT of work to ship to the U.S. I really hope it will get easier or you will figure out some sort of an easier process. I am really excited that shipping to the U.S. will start soon because I am definitely going to be buying some!

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Bree August 4, 2009

sounds like it would have been easier just to move here and ship to Canada LOL :-P

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Chloe August 4, 2009

It might help to hire someone, maybe just for a couple hours (5 max) a week to help with the paperwork. I don’t know if you guys have the investment or capital for that, but it’s a thought. You have also probably streamlined the forms too, but keeping the info there and changing just a few key items will help as well. Maybe you could upload it as a pdf from your computer.

Hopefully we can order some Glo Bars soon, I know we’re all anxiously awaiting their US debut!

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Still Life in South America August 4, 2009

Good for you girl. I know this seems like a lot of work, but once it gets ironed out, it will be smooth sailing!!

I’m really happy for your success. (AND I can’t wait to order once I move back to the U.S.) :-)

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Allie (Live Laugh Eat) August 5, 2009

I can’t WAIT to try the bar from my swag bag!!! All your hard work will be paid off soon enough m’dear!

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Anna August 5, 2009

Wow, so much work, but I’ll bet this will be GREAT for your business! I’ll totally order some goodies :)

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Juicy Jessy August 5, 2009

so much work! i think it’s great you’re donating the glo bars.
i would love to try them; but I guess shipping to Europe would be even harder :-)

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Angela (Run Study Eat) August 5, 2009

def wanna pick up some of those Awake bars when they come to the US!

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Sarah August 5, 2009

I’d be sooooo happy if you’d ship to europe, pleaaaaase…
Do you think it might be possible or would it take too long for the bars to arrive and they’d dry out?

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Katrina (gluten free gidget) August 5, 2009

I know you are swamped, so no pressure. I’m just curious. Any update the gluten free bars you were working on?

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Julie August 5, 2009

The bars look great! And Awake sounds wonderful :-) Just thinking how lunch held you over with all the veggies?

Julie

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Victoria August 5, 2009

I LOVE the ‘awake’ name! Amazing idea x

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leslie August 5, 2009

i’m so excited that there will be a glo bar in the swag bag! yes yes yes.

i think you seriously need an assistant to do all the admin work for you. i’d volunteer! :)

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Jessie August 5, 2009

Wow Angela, I would love to have your kind of career, it looks like you’re having fun and doing something you’re really passionate about! Plus your husband is a carpenter (correct me if I’m wrong) and your house looks fab! You are one lucky girl!

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Leah @ Simply Fabulous August 5, 2009

I’m sorry you can’t go to the Summit…hopefully being in your best friends wedding will make up for it LOL :)

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Catherine August 5, 2009

I can’t wait to try a Glo Bar at the Healthy Living Summit!!

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Haleigh August 5, 2009

I can’t wait until Glo Bars are available in the US! I will be one of your first American orders :)

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Recipes for Creativity August 5, 2009

You are truly amazing – I do not have the “follow through” gene and you most certainly do! All that you have had to do to get ready to ship to the U.S. is phenomenal, you should be very, very proud of yourself!

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Kristen August 5, 2009

I feel like I should order some bars now before the US launch…who knows how busy you’ll be once that starts up :)
Good luck getting it all sorted out- I know there are even some larger businesses that don’t want to take the time to figure out cross-border food shipping! So the fact that you’re doing it on your own is a testament to your willingness to work hard and serve your customers!

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Jess August 5, 2009

Wow, Ange! All that shipping/customs stuff is craziness. I promise I won’t “nag” about my inability to purchase GloBakery items from now on. But I will be super thrilled when you are able to ship to the Sunshine State (FLA!) one day. Hang in there, you are so amazing for following your dreams and opening a bakery in your very own home! You GLO girl! :D

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