Have you ever been frustrated that you can’t find a reliable source for the key ingredient to a fabulous new menu item? Do you stress about an inconsistent price and quality of your ingredients? Are you looking in vain for products and purveyors with organic and other certifications? Do you find yourself spending as much time looking for ingredients as you do cooking and managing your kitchen? Working with a food broker can alleviate many of these issues.
What is a Food Ingredient Broker?
A food broker can help you navigate these many issues associated with finding the ingredients that make your restaurant’s food so special. A broker works with a number of food manufacturers, distributors, and growers, and can help you negotiate excellent pricing as well as find ingredients you may have had difficulty procuring. However, securing a reliable source of all the food items you need for your menu is just one of the many benefits of working with a food broker.
1. We give you back time for your other responsibilities. The time we free up sourcing your ingredients for you allows you to concentrate on managing your business, interacting with your guests, and being accessible to your employees.
2. It’s more cost-effective to outsource your ingredient shopping. Sure, you can hire a person or a team to handle finding and purchasing all the unique ingredients for your restaurant. However, the broker’s fee is almost always less expensive than hiring an in-house purchasing agent.
3. Food brokers know the right people. A food broker’s sole focus is buying and selling food. That means he or she knows a lot of food people and can often find consistent, reliable sources for ingredients you’ve been having trouble securing.
Challenges to working with a food broker
1. You have to relinquish a little control. Giving over the responsibility of finding and purchasing your ingredients can be a little stressful to chefs who are used to being in control of everything in their kitchens. However, the results and with all the found time you’ll have will likely make you forget your control issues.
2. The broker may not be as passionate about organic foods or other values. If you’re the type of chef who will walk to the ends of the earth to source a rare, organic ingredient, working with a food broker may not be the right choice for you. While we have multiple, reliable sources for quality, affordable ingredients, even some rare ones, we probably won’t send a ship to Patagonia to pick up those Chilean peppers you need for your salsa.
Finding the ingredients you need to keep your restaurant solvent and still producing innovative, delicious dishes doesn’t have to be an impossible task. A food broker can help you source the ingredients you need and give you extra time to spend with your customers and staff.