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How to Choose a New Restaurant Supplier for High-Quality Produce

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December 04, 2019

Today’s customers expect the best from their local restaurants and that means delicious, healthy dishes made with garden-fresh produce. Restaurateurs who partner with wholesale bulk suppliers that prioritize customer service as well as top-quality products can create healthful menu items that keep customers coming back for more! 

A reliable, on time, wholesale restaurant supplier is crucial to a profitable and productive business because they are responsible for providing quality meat and produce that’s been stored at food safe temperatures.

3 Common Challenges Restaurants Face

Restaurant owners have a lot on their plates, but worrying about quality products doesn’t have to be an issue. By working with a supply vendor who is also a partner and invested in their success, can make all the difference! 

Below we share some common challenges restaurant owners face when it comes to their produce needs and how they can be mitigated.

1. Inconsistent Delivery Times

Timing is everything in the restaurant industry, from proper mise en place, to cooking à la minute, a great kitchen lives by the clock. Once picked, each fruit and vegetable has a limited shelf-life, which means it needs to be delivered and prepared within specific timelines to maintain its peak freshness. Late deliveries can affect your ability to properly prep and serve your menu items. They can also cause menu inconsistencies if you are counting on produce that isn’t delivered. This, in turn, may also create an inconsistent dining experience for your customers.

2. Low Quality Produce 

Receiving a shipment of produce that is not at the standard you expect can also create more challenges as a restaurant owner and chef. Perhaps you think of a creative way to use what veggies, fruit, or other produce you were given. Or maybe you adapt your menu to have dishes composed of produce you’ve properly stored yourself, such as pickled or canned foods.

Nevertheless, you should never have to settle for poor quality products! Look for a vendor that understands your needs and timelines.

 3. Improper Food Storage

Proper food temperature control during transportation is crucial to maintaining the longevity of produce. Extreme hot or cold temps can affect food in myriad ways. Heat and humidity can encourage produce to spoil quickly and colder temperatures can impact the quality of delicate foods. 

If you receive wilted or spoiled produce, ask your wholesale restaurant supplier about their food safety program. A reputable vendor will be happy to provide you with information about their protocols.

Common Restaurant Problems Chart

How Do You Find the Best Restaurant Bulk Food Supplier?

If you’ve decided to make a food supplier switch, here are some tips to finding and hiring the best one for your needs.

1. Select a vendor with exemplary reviews and references. Look for a food supplier, like US Foods CHEF'STORE, with strong ties to the restaurant community and who receives recommendations from fellow restaurant owners. 

2. Ensure your supplier knows the ins and outs of safe food handling and storage practices. All of our team members are well versed in proper food safety practices. From standard storing techniques and professional packaging at checkout, to helping customers load products for transport, we ensure you receive top-quality produce.  

3. Go with a bulk food supplier that can provide you with product when you need it, especially in a pinch. With an easy-to-navigate warehouse, online ordering options, and knowledgeable and friendly employees, we can have your produce ready to go at your convenience. Or if you have an unexpected rush and need to restock a product, just stop by one of our walk-in locations on the fly and grab what you need.  

4. Pick a company with impeccable customer service. As a restaurant owner, you are in the business of customer service, and your vendor should be too. Operating for over 60 years, CHEF'STORE values all its customers, from regulars to first-timers, and promises an exceptional customer service experience.  

US Foods CHEF'STORE Provides Fresh Bulk Produce at competitive Prices

Need to make the switch to a new wholesale food supplier? We inspect all our produce and stock nothing but the freshest, best products for your restaurant. CHEF'STORE allows you to easily set up a business account and order produce for pick up at any of our convenient locations.

Focusing on quality ingredients and expert customer service, we’re your one-stop-shop for produce, meats, and more! Browse products online or visit one of our locations today and see why restaurant owners choose us for all their food and kitchen supply needs.

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