Agri Exotic Trading

basket of organic produce in a tan basket for delivery

Organic Buying Guide: How Often Should Restaurants Order Produce

Owning and managing a restaurant is never short on challenges or surprises. Successful restaurants often have a thousand moving parts, and the people who manage them need to be knowledgeable of each of them. Preparing to order produce requires many steps to guarantee value and freshness.

The most important aspect of a restaurant is undoubtedly the food. But the key to delicious food that keeps people coming back is often fresh food, and at least half of almost any dish is made up of produce. We pride ourselves on our produce prowess, from fresh cut options, 24 hour service, special ordering, to breakfast, lunch, and dinner orders. Did we mention second runs? This has given us some insight in ways to approach produce orders.

Agri, How Often Should I be Ordering Produce?

That often depends on the nature of your dishes and the size of your establishment. These are both big determining factors when it comes to restaurants restocking fruits, vegetables, and specialty items. In most cases, restaurant chefs need deliveries two to three times per week, at least. Sometimes, a chef may even require daily or second run orders, as well. You can go mad trying to predict what will sell, what will sit, and when you’ll need more. Keep an eye on what items are selling best and which ones could use a revamp or nix. This will help you determine your ordering scheduling. If you’re aim is to stay fresh, this timing makes the difference between peak flavor and quality, or something that may need a second review in the menu.

Agri, How do I Get the Freshest Ingredients?

Well, we’re certainly a good place to start! We source everything locally, and are more than happy to deliver fresh produce on your schedule. Timing is everything in the kitchen, so we always keep those necessities at heart. As a local establishment, it is always good to make friends with the farmers. Reach out to dairy, fruit, vegetable, and livestock farms that are local to your area. Ask questions, get to know them, start talking about forming a delivery or pick-up relationship. Not only will you be supporting local, your guests will love to see that rapport from their hosts.

Agri, How Can I Preserve Quality?

That all depends on your chef, their best practices, and your distributor. Local companies love taking care of their local restaurants. That’s one of the reason we make ourselves available around the clock. Restaurant life is unpredictable, so our approach is taking one more unknown off your plate. We’re aware restaurant staffing and hours are getting cut these days, so we like emphasizing our fresh cut services. This saves you time and money, in the long run. In addition, we notify consumers of any overstock, so the produce can still be used at the height of its freshness. This relationship keeps not just the food fresh, but the menu too—which customers will love.

Is Buying in Bulk Better for my Bottom Line?

Let’s talk big restaurant chains for a second. They purchase their items through a centralized purchasing department, where food is pre-packaged to preserve freshness. Additionally, a study by MSU of mileage for food travels, collected data showed that conventionally grown food traveled an average of about 1,500 miles. That’s roughly the same distance between New Hampshire and Miami.

Meanwhile, the same study showed restaurants who bought locally received their food more quickly, not prepackaged, and on average produced only traveled 56 miles from farm or distributor to table.  Restaurants who don’t source their food from local farms or produce distributors often have to order in bulk and on a certain schedule. To assure that they don’t run out of food before the next scheduled delivery, there’s often more food than the restaurant actually needs, which either results in waste, or food that isn’t as fresh and doesn’t taste as good (or even both). These are emissions, food waste, over-spending, and diminished relationships with local vendors and farmers — doesn’t seem worth it to us, not when we’re right down the road.

At Agri, we offer fresh, delicious produce and superior service—for restaurants, caterers, hoteliers, grocers, and anyone who wants the best ingredients at home.

Click here to order produce guaranteed fresh and ready to eat.

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Office (973) 546-8601
Fax (973) 546-8609

700 Route 46 West, Suite 5
Clifton, New Jersey 07013

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