[Market-farming] Restaurants / salad greens
janetb at ncat.org
Mon Oct 6 08:57:10 EDT 2003
Thanks, Liz, for this advice! I have sold very little to restaurants,
but have just finished a draft for a new ATTRA publication on selling to
restaurants. If anyone would like a copy, please call 800-345-9140 and
ask for info on selling to restaurants. It includes several profiles
from around the country. And the following summary:
One key to remember when working with chefs or restaurant owners is that
they are very busy people. The following pointers in regard to
maintaining an account were gleaned from talking with several chefs and
• Ask the chef what day of the week and hour is the best time to contact
them and then be consistent about making contact at that time every week
to find out what they need.
• Ask how they want to be contacted: telephone, e-mail, or fax.
• Provide delivery service.
• Schedule a winter visit with seed catalogs in hand before ordering
seed for the coming season; chefs appreciate the opportunity to tell you
what they can use or would like to try.
• Chefs are able to feature local produce on their menus if they have
advance notice about what is available.
• Chefs are willing to pay premium prices for specialty products such as
berries, sweet corn, cherry tomatoes, and salad mix, but not for
“commodities” such as potatoes.
Liz Pike wrote:
Hey Roger, the best thing to do is to ask the chef/restaurant. Different
>chefs/restaurants want different things. Generally, anything you can do on
>your end to increase kitchen efficiency for them is well-received. The same
>for varieties to grow. Take them a seed catalog and let them drool. This
>gives them more "ownership" in the crops, and they're likely to increase
>their orders beyond greens.
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