In case you missed our recent panel discussion on commodity cost strategies and solutions with our panelist experts comprised of Mike Wiedower of Food Service Advantage, Bill Lindsey of COGS-Well, and J.R. Dehring, CFO of Cameron Mitchell Restaurants, there were 10 key takeaways from the discussion. Certainly, everyone is looking for ways to reduce their commodity costs, and our experts representing purchasing, technology, and operations shared their best practices to do so.

Here are the top 10 takeaways in no particular order:

  1. Concentrate purchasing power through an industry-best legal distributor contract.​
  2. Negotiate buying power directly through the manufacturer community where applicable. ​
  3. Education is paramount ​to understanding the commodity markets.
  4. Menu development is key to retaining customers and food costs.
  5. Because of the frequency of price changes and the number of substitutions, technology is a requirement for accurately tracking the cost of goods. ​
  6. If you maintain recipes and track usage for your top 20% of purchased items, you will get 80% of the value. ​
  7. Be mindful of labor costs for prep recipes; otherwise, you may end up spending more in labor than you save in food costs. ​
  8. Don’t be afraid to take price.​
  9. Embrace off-premise and make sure it is profitable, not a distraction.
  10. Listen to your guests’ feedback, including survey responses.

For additional context on these takeaways, or to connect with the panelists to learn more, we’re pleased to provide exclusive access to the webinar recording.


Article written by:
Dustin Minton, CPA
Director, Assurance & Business Advisory Services

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Tags: Operations