September 1, 2022

The Role of Chefs in Restaurant Procurement

By TopUp Mama

Chefs play a critical role in procurement to increase the long-term performance of restaurants. Their responsibilities have stretched far beyond the usual kitchen-related tasks to planning, forecasting, and managing supplies to ensure minimal wastage. 

The relationship between chefs and procurement managers is critical to the reputation of a restaurant. The two need to work closely together to ensure they’re getting the best products, at the best prices, and that the inventory is managed appropriately. Just how can procurement managers rely on chefs to save costs?

  1. Planning 

Chefs are responsible for managing restaurant menus in terms of deciding specials for the week, and the general meals that the restaurant serves. In menu management, chefs specify the amounts of ingredients to be used in dishes and thus can predict how long items will serve their purpose before they have to be restocked. This way, procurement managers can plan in advance to have these supplies purchased. 

Chefs can also control the waste of ingredients by ensuring only the needed amount is ordered. The way they achieve this is through predicting the demand for certain meals and planning accordingly for them. In the case that these ingredients are not used, chefs should also be innovative in reusing them for other meals other than discarding and increasing losses. 

  1. Quality Assurance

Chefs are the best quality analysts for restaurant supplies. Many suppliers bring different product qualities to the market but only the chef can advise which is best to use for the best meal outcomes. Products like rice differ in type and while A might make the best white rice, it might not be the best option for Biryani or Pilau. Chefs know this and will always advise on which suppliers or brands to work with. 

They also ensure products are delivered in their best state and make returns as soon as they are received to protect the business from losses and a destroyed reputation in the market. 

Procurement managers should employ the counsel of chefs in making quality decisions - it is not always about making the purchases that make financial sense. Chefs do not just belong in the kitchen, they belong on the tables where major restaurant business decisions are made.

How else are chefs involved in saving the cost of supplies at your restaurant?

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