[Market-farming] Restaurants / salad greens

John Hendrickson jhendric at wisc.edu
Fri Oct 10 13:07:48 EDT 2003


Hi!  Hope you're well and that you had a good growing season.  If you are 
looking for people to "review" the draft publication, I'd be happy to 
help.  I've been an advisory board member to a coop that sells to 
restaurants in Madison, Chicago and Milwaukee since 1996.


At 07:57 AM 10/6/2003 -0500, you wrote:
>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 market gardeners.
>• 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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>Market-farming at lists.ibiblio.org
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John Hendrickson
Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems
University of Wisconsin-Madison
mail: 1450 Linden Drive
street: 1535 Observatory Drive
Madison, WI  53706

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