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Can I profit from selling mooncakes?

In only a few days’ time, it will be the Mid-Autumn Festival. The signature food for this festival would be the Mooncake. I have always wondered whether I would be able to make a profit from selling Mooncakes online.

There are a lot of different types of Mooncakes, ranging from Traditional, Snowskin, Shanghai and Jelly. My favourite type would always be the Traditional Mooncake without yolk.

Since it is not possible to have mid autumn artium fare this year, I have been seeing a lot of people selling their Mooncakes online and I decided that I would like to join in on it too.

So, in this blog, I would be researching how I am able to sell Mooncakes and earn a profit. I have decided to use a recipe I found online.

Ingredient Cost

The most important component to calculate the profitability of the food is to first identify the cost of the ingredients. In this blog, I have decided to go very in-depth to the extent of adding the miscellaneous cost such as packaging, electricity, water, and gas.

The picture below shows the quantity and ingredients used for 4 standard size mooncakes on a 150-gm round mould.

Let’s look at the recipe in detail. These are ingredients that you can get from Redman by Phoon Huat or from NTUC FairPrice.

Disclaimer: I am not associated with any of the supermarkets, prices may change from time to time and there may be promotions too. Prices are for reference only and accurate at the time of writing and suppliers may change their price anytime, therefore please do your own research.

The choice of where to get is also dependent on whether you are baking for yourself once or buying the ingredients to bake for selling. For the former, you will want to get ingredients that are cheaper and for the latter, you will want to get ingredients that are cheaper per gram or ml.

One example is Melon Seeds, if you are only baking once, you would have chosen to buy from Redman and pay $4.90 (original price) vs $9.50 from FairPrice. But if you are selling, you would want a cheaper price per gram and FairPrice should be your choice at $0.019/g vs $0.0196/g.

As such, the one highlighted in green shows my recommended choice based on the cost per unit. The assumption is also based on you planning to bake this cake multiple times till you fully consume all the ingredients.

Since the purpose of this blog is to calculate ingredient cost to see whether you can profit from selling this cake, we will suggest cheaper ingredients price per gram or millilitre.

After comparison of the prices, here is the shopping list for you to pick up the ingredients from NTUC FairPrice and Redman These are the products from NTUC FairPrice that are more cost-effective or only available here.

· Alkali Water. ($0.90)

· Eggs. ($2.20)

· Melon Seeds. ($9.50)

These are the products from Redman that are more cost-effective or only available here.

· Golden Syrup. ($5.50)

· Peanut Oil ($9.00)

· Hong Kong Flour. ($3.45)

· Lotus Paste ($14.90)

The total expense to get all these ingredients is $45.45. The breakdown is as follows.

Next, we put the ingredients into the Hommyliciouz Food Cost Calculator. We can tabulate the total ingredient cost per Mooncake as $10.75. If you would like to have a copy of this, you can fill in your details at end of this blog and it will be emailed to you.

Miscellaneous cost

a. Packaging cost

You can get a Mooncake box set from Redman for $4.20. It should be able to fit 4 normal sized mooncakes.

b. Gas

Gas will not be really needed as you do not need to cook anything. So, the gas price would be down to $0.

c. Electric

Electric tariff goes up and down too and I am going to assume that we need to use an electric oven of 3000W, and we need to bake the mooncake for 20 mins. Electric tariff is around $0.20 per kWh too so cost of electric will be 20/60 * 3 * 0.20 = $0.20.

d. Water

The water tariff is around $1.50 for 1000 litres. Let's assume we need 20l of water to include washing as well. The estimated price will be $0.03.

Total Miscellaneous cost is $4.43.

How much can I sell it for?

Finally, you can put in the price you intend to sell, and the Hommyliciouz Food calculator will calculate the breakdown for you. You can refer to our previous blog on how to price the food that you are going to sell here.

After doing some research on how much Bakeries and Hotels are selling Mooncakes, the prices range is wide from $36 to $70 or even more for 4 pieces.

Since the mooncake recipe is to make 4 traditional normal-sized mooncakes, I am going to price it at a modest price of $40. The selling price is the final piece of information needed for the Food Cost Calculator. Here’s the result after I put in the selling price of $40.

After considering ingredient cost, miscellaneous cost, and platform fee, you can still make a net profit of $16.82 per cake or approximately to 42% profit.

Finally, based on 4 criteria that I look at i.e., profitability, difficulty, demand, and time, let's see what's the total score for the traditional Mooncake.

The Mooncake is on the recommended list if you intend to make this for your family and make some extra to sell to neighbours. To me, this is a win-win. Neighbours can enjoy quality mooncakes and you will get to earn some profit or to subsidise the cost of your ingredients. If you like our work on cost, please like our blog and share with home chef friends you know, and we will continue writing more and keep you updated. Also, like our Facebook Page to get updates on new food offered by our home chefs.

Thanks for reading as always. We welcome your input, suggestions, or comments below. Let me know if the considerations in this blog are beneficial for planning your home chef business and you would like to know more about a specific meal or dish that you are planning to sell.

If you plan to be a home chef or you have been selling this mooncake on your menu, we would like to invite you to join us as Hommyliciouz's home chef. You may click here to download the mobile application and register as a home chef.

You can contact us on WhatsApp for discussion. Whatever your strategy is, Hommyliciouz is on this journey with you and will help you market your food for success.

If you would like to have a copy of the Hommyliciouz Food Cost Calculator, let us know your details below and we will send you a copy by email. Also, let us know if you would like us to do costing for the food that you are selling or intend to sell.


About Author

I grew up with my grandma and one of my favourite times when I was young was in the early morning. I could get out of the house with my grandma patronizing the wet market. She would buy fresh ingredients which she would cook for the day. Her love for her family is poured into the food she prepared daily and can be felt by every generation she cooked for. Now with my own kids, I hope they can grow up being able to enjoy healthy home cook food too. As much as I enjoy cooking for my family, I find it a difficult juggle between my 9 to 5 job and preparing meals for my family. At the same time, at the weekend, I could spend more time cooking and I wish I can share my speciality for other people to enjoy.

I knew that in this digital world that we lived in, there has to be a better way and that’s the motivation for me to start Hommyliciouz .

The objective behind Hommyliciouz is to create a connection among people within communities where the passionate chef could provide fresh, home cook meals that are healthy and affordable.

We truly hope that you can enjoy this platform sharing love through cooking.

CEO of Hommyliciouz

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