The Day the NFL Called: My Food-Tasting Side Hustle

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The National Food Lab is a company that conducts market research for food companies before they release new products. Their office is close to home so I’ve signed up to be a paid taste tester. They’ve called a few times but for one reason or another I never qualified.

Until last week.

The study was on new sandwich spreads that I guess are intended to compete with mayonnaise and mustard. I don’t know what company is researching this new market opportunity, but they had flavors like garlic-parmesan, bbq-bacon, sundried tomato, and pesto.

The pesto one was pretty good, the rest kind of gross.

I’m curious to see if any of these products get the go ahead for launch and start showing up in the grocery store!

I participated in a similar study in Atlanta on Miller Chill before it came out. Funny story about how I was recruited for that test. Middle-aged black woman is wandering the parking lot at my condo complex.

Her: “Excuse me, how old are you?”

Me: “Um 24. Why?”

Her: “We need white men for this paid study on beer.”

Me: “Get paid to drink beer?  I’m in.  And yes I can bring some more white friends.”

Apparently she was having trouble finding white guys in the ATL! Very strange. It turns out she got paid like $10 or $15 for every person she brought in for the study. Interesting job. We ended up getting $60 or $70 for our beer drinking trouble. Anytime.

For this sandwich spread test I got $30 for about an hour’s worth of time. Not an amazing hourly wage but pretty darn good for the work involved.

Related: Paid focus group opportunities in person and online.

5 thoughts on “The Day the NFL Called: My Food-Tasting Side Hustle”

  1. I HATE mayo, and so would’ve been happy to be paid to help judge for a substitute.

    I also would’ve paid to get see you on video when you found out your keys were in a locked car……

  2. I really wish I was in tune back in the day about this side hustle stuff. My guess is it wasn’t really discussed. They don’t teach this in school. The beauty of the internet is not only is the world wide web here to stay, but it provides aspiring entrepreneurs the afforded ability to try their hand at an online side hustle to see what can possibly come into fruition. Whether it’s affiliate marketing, food blogging, or selling your own product or service, there’s a market for everything online. And the ironic part is, you can nowadays become a future online millionaire right from the comfort of working from your smartphone or home computer by writing and publishing lots and lots of content and building quality relationships with people. I probably would’ve been $20 million richer today had I know what I know now back in the day. Isn’t that right, my friend Nick? :-)

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