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How to Choose the Best Suppliers for Your Restaurant Business

by Jessica Amey

When you choose a menu, you need to know that you will have a steady source of ingredients. A diverse and interesting menu is useless if you can’t deliver it to your diners! That’s why the experts say it’s important to select a good food and beverage supplier first – you have to ensure they have everything you need, after all. The supplier you choose for your food and beverage items must also present you with the best quality – particularly for perishables. But before you can choose your food
and beverage suppliers, you need to consider this to make the best choice. Here’s how to choose the best suppliers for your restaurant business.

Before you decide:
Before you make your final choice, you need to take note of a few things. For instance – what will be your overall menu? Of course, it’s important to come up with a well-thought-out, efficient and organised menu, and you need to decide on one that fits your vision and objectives and meets your client’s needs. But you also have to consider a menu that simplifies your raw material management.

You also need to have a good idea of what exactly you need. Figure out what you need every day, and figure out what you only need occasionally. What special or unique ingredients do you have, and what do you offer for groups? Make a list. Take note of beverages as well – for example; you might need a fruit juice concentrate supplier if you are planning to offer fruit juices, shakes, or smoothies. It will lessen your perishables and allow you to save more.

Of course, the budget is another strong consideration, and pay close attention to how much each of your dishes costs. With this, you will be able to control the use of your perishables, and you can also have an easier time controlling your purchases – and, more importantly, nothing goes to waste! It would also be good if you could hire someone who will be in charge of purchasing – the head of purchasing and the supplier must communicate clearly.

What to look for in a supplier
You should make a list of what you think makes a good supplier as well. Here are some ideas:

Local and high-quality products
If you are looking for quality ingredients, one thing you can make sure of is a supplier who can provide you with local produce or ingredients. This will ensure the highest quality, and you can even ‘boast’ about it to your customers. But you also need to choose suppliers that will meet all your restaurant’s needs – you need to make sure that whatever the season, your supplier will have it. It would make more sense to choose seasonal products as well – this will ensure they are of the highest quality.

If you can work with suppliers that can give you more value for your money, that would be great. Choose those who can provide you with the right ingredients at the right time for a good price. Remember that the ingredients you choose should not exceed 30 per cent of the dish’s final price.

A good service
Look for a supplier who can give you good service as well. They must be organised and punctual and adhere to all regulations. They need to have a good idea of your timetable and menu needs so they can meet all your delivery requirements.

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