I take it that you're young. You said that most people your age want to make some money to just go out and have fun. I'm young as well. 25 years old. I've been studying business since I was 18. My concentration is more towards business operations even though I excel in organizational behavior and communication type roles.
A business plan needs to be a strategic business plan. You have to have a strategy...a plan for the future of your business. Majority of the plan is operations and finance. That does depend on the business of course. You'd be manufacturing a product, not selling a service.
You're right, you can't plan for everything. Sometimes you should be conservative (worst case scenario forecasting) and sometimes you should be aggressive with your strategy and implementation of the strategy.
You mentioned that a business plan can take quite a bit of time to formulate and that you think at some time you should just jump in and do it. Well, have you made a budget yet. As far as how much it will cost to produce a certain amount of product, how much it will cost to inventory/warehouse the product, how much for employees, etc.
I think that this aspect (finance and budget) should not be overlooked and should not be jumped into. This aspect of the business in my opinion should take careful consideration. Small errors at the begining could cost big bucks at the end. Also, by knowing how much a monthly/yearly production or operation budget will cost you, you will have a good idea what to look for in case of loans. LOANS CAN BE TOUGH TO GET. If you have a rock solid plan, banks still might not help you out.
That is where your rich uncle or whatever comes in. Seriously, rich family members are the ticket to obtaining small loans or even co-signing loans for your business. Even if they're not rich, established family members may be able to help in some way or another. Just a thought.
Again, I have to repeat that it's pretty important to not just jump into the business. Careful and thorough planning must be achieved. It won't take as long as you think. Organization is a key element in creating your business plan. Spend time at your local Barnes and Nobles in the business management section reading books on how to form a strategic business plan. The better the planning, the less suprising some things can be and vice versa.
You also have to figure that if your going to produce a product (your candy), you'll need suppliers. Not only will you need to find the suppliers to supply your demand of "materials", you'll need a good forecast of how much raw materials you'll need to purchase to get the right amount of candies produced.
Perfect or near perfect forecasting is key to a strategic plan. But so damn hard to predict. If you can forecast with in a few percent of deviation from your demand then you'll succeed. Also, shop around while purchasing. You'll get better deals by looking at every potential supplier, then you can find the best deal that way. I'm on a rant.
You mentioned that you have no distribution system. Figure out how you can get one going, or how you can run your business without a big distribution system. Shoot, it may even be wise not to spend all kinds of money on a big distribution system. You can start slow, start small, establishing your business. Establishing the companies niche, implementing the mission of the company. Some sort of dist. system may have to be set up, depending on your strategy.
What do you want out of your business? Majority of the market share, enough money to retire early, be big, be small. What? What is it that will stand out about your company, what is it that will make your business succeed? Is it the great taste of the product? Is it that good? How many people so far have tried it and said dayyyyummm.
Your mentioned that you'd probably have to start small and visit Mom n' Pops, deli's, etc. That sounds reasonable. This could help you get further into the industry. This will also give you a good idea if your product can succeed.
Feel free to keep telling us about your plan. PM if you'd like. I don't mind bouncing ideas back n' forth. I don't want a share of your profits, but Uncle Sam does.