Business Enterprise Program (BEP)

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The Business Enterprise Program was created via the Randolph-Sheppard Act of 1936 and paved the way for government statutes that provide a “priority” for blind vendors to operate food service facilities in federal and state buildings.

Any New York State resident, who is legally blind or deaf-blind, 18 years of age or older and is a United States citizen, may be eligible for this program.

New York State Commission for the Blind (NYSCB)’s Business Enterprise Program (BEP) provides a rigorous BEP vendor training program that teaches NYSCB participants to successfully manage a deli, vending operation, newsstand, snack bar or cafeteria. Participants learn business math, labor and merchandise management, purchasing, legal requirements and customer service. Participants will also earn (through study and passing a test), the ServSafe® nationally accredited food safety certification from the National Restaurant Association.

Upon successful completion of the BEP vendor training program, BEP vendors receive an interest-free loan to buy their initial product inventory, as well as ongoing support from BEP specialists.

If you have questions about BEP, please contact your local NYSCB BEP Office. You may also find answers to some of your questions at the link to the BEP FAQs below.

If you are interested in becoming a BEP vendor, call 1-866-871-3000 toll-free. You will be connected to your local NYSCB District Office. Indicate that you are interested in the BEP when you call, or include that information in the ”Remarks” section when you fill out the required Application for Services Form.

BEP Brochure

Download the Busines Enterprise Program brochure for more information.

BEP Frequently Asked Questions

BEP Program Facts