How to run a Bunnings barbecue sausage sizzle

Here are some tips on running a Bunnings BBQ fundraiser.

Before the day

Apply to Bunnings
  • Speak to the Activities Organiser at your Bunnings store and ask which dates are available. You may need to book several months ahead.  The most profitable weekend is Fathers Day weekend. Check if there’s an annual application cut-off date. Also, ask if you can go on the emergency standby list.
  • You will need to apply via written letter using your organisation’s letterhead.  You need to also your public insurance Certificate of Currency.
  • Get approval from the Activities Organiser to submit documentation via email.

Public Liability Insurance

Bunnings require public liability insurance.  Many organisations don’t need to buy separate insurance as they are covered by an umbrella agreement with their parent organisation.  For example, my primary school was covered by the Victorian government insurance policy, so we didn’t need to purchase insurance.

If you need insurance, AAMI is the best one I’ve found so far and should be suitable for your needs.  AAMI suggested only public liability is required (don’t need products liability as well).  You might only need the insurance for one or two days, but the minimum when buying the insurance is three months. Information on the AAMI website is at http://www.aami.com.au/business-insurance/market-stall-and-exhibitor-insurance

Local council permit

In the state of Victoria, register the details on this site: https://streatrader.health.vic.gov.au. Allow a week for the council to check and approve your registration.

On the day

Some supermarkets give discounts (eg 10%) to community group fundraisers.  It’s worth asking.

What you need

  • Drink – soft drink (Coke) or equivalent
  • Drink – soft drink (Sprite) or equivalent
  • Drink – soft drink (Fanta) or equivalent
  • Drinks – bottles of water (24)
  • Bread
  • Ice
  • Large plastic tubs (containers for the ice and drinks)
  • Onions – the smell of onions is appealing to customers, even if they don’t like onions
  • Sauce – tomato
  • Sauce – mustard
  • Sauce – brown/BBQ
  • Aprons
  • Tongs
  • Paper napkins/ serviettes
  • Large plastic bin bags
  • Hand paper towels
  • Liquid soap
  • Foil containers to present the sausage in bread to the customer
  • Cooking utensils
  • Container/s for bread which you pre-prepare
  • Tea towels
  • Esky or equivalent cooler
  • Cash float
  • Roster (see below)
  • Disposable gloves and/or hand sanitiser
  • Tin foil or baking paper (makes the grill easier to clean)
  • Flyswatters (not fly spray) especially if hot

Optional items

Other possible food – don’t buy too much, and don’t make it too complicated. Better if you charge a bit extra to maximum your fundraising yield.

  • Mushrooms
  • Potato crisps
  • Bread rolls
  • Gourmet beef or chicken sausages
  • Grated cheese
  • Tomato relish (nicer than sauce + 25c)

People

You need three people or more at any one time.  The roles are:

  • money handlers
  • cookers
  • giving the sausages over to the customers

Other fundraising activities (eg raffle tickets)

Shifts

Organise people in two-hour shifts, and people can work more than one shift if they need to.  Peak period is usually from 11 am to 2 pm.

Start timeFinish timeNote
8 am10 amNeed strong people in case you have to move anything, such as the A-frame or gas bottle. The gas and the gas bottle is supplied by Bunnings.
10 am12 noon
12 noon2 pm
2 pm4 pmFinish at 4 pm or before if everything sold out
Clean up the hot plate when packing up.  At some Bunnings locations, they will do this for you.

Links:

Bunnings hits snag with ‘ridiculous’ sausage sizzle safety rule