Hospitality Products

Hospitality Products
Entegra – Top Tips to mitigate inflating costs in your Restaurant
Analysing and fine-tuning your menu, supply chain, food waste and deliveries
IHF Associate Member

Analysing Your Menu

It all starts with your menu.

Having a reduced, simple, and agile menu can make adaptations easier and allow you to massify your purchases. Here are some simple actions our clients find work well:

  • Read up on the latest market trends to make informed purchase decisions prior to ordering. This can also help you to see if you have highly inflationary products on there, and if so, swap them out for a similar ingredient, or even dish.
  • Systematically offer a dish of the day according to price trends for maximum flexibility.
  • Optimise plate portions - working on plate coverage, analysing plate return, and subsequently adjusting portions can be a quick win on lowering costs.

Controlling inventory goes hand in hand with the above, and something we know can be time consuming for most businesses. Entegra eases this laborious task through a simple user-friendly system which records and tracks your food spend, inventory, and a whole lot more, improving both efficiency and margins.

How does the cost of an ingredient translate to its menu cost?

Understanding your food cost percentage. Keeping on top of how much an ingredient is, versus how much you charge for it on your menu, can help with calculating your food cost percentage, in other words, total cost of ingredients divided by the menu item price. The aim should be to have this at around 15-30%, providing a 70-85% gross revenue on the item. We encourage our clients to adopt regular food cost control as best practice, you can identify any high food cost and remove or reduce it. This way, you reduce your cost and increase your gain.

Tackling Food Waste

The second area is tackling food waste. We know that food waste is one of the main drivers of money wastage in restaurants. Be aware of how much consumers are leaving behind on their plates, it might mean reconsidering your portion sizes to reduce wastage. Re-using any leftover ingredients in a different dish can be beneficial at reducing wastage, get innovative and you will save perfectly good ingredients whilst controlling spend.

A tip for waste reduction is to create your menu based on your current inventory, instead of the opposite. Creating a special or dish of the day with food that needs to be used, either before it spoils or is not fit for original purpose, re-purpose it! Strawberries meant for a dessert which are misshapen could be used in a smoothie for instance.

Optimising Your Supply Chain

Optimising your supply chain can also assist with cost control. We are fortunate to have been able to alert and advise our clients on volatile commodities ahead of time. We keep a pulse on the market, advising our clients to avoid certain products on upcoming menu changes based on what is on our watch list.

As an example, vegetable oil pricing is currently at a 10-year high and supplies of rapeseed, soya, sunflower and palm oils are all reduced as demand for exports to China are up 40% year on year. We were able to negotiate a six-month price hold on this commodity for our clients.

The other way we have dealt with this challenge is through working with our supply partners and clients to find solutions to best ease the pressure. This has been through an agreed reduction of delivery days, advance ordering and wherever possible, stockholding.

Entegra also deliver regular market trend reports, so you can quickly see what is in season. Using seasonal ingredients is not only fresher and tastier, but they are also usually cheaper too! Providing your guests with diversity will improve satisfaction and return rates, whilst supporting local farmers.

As your purchasing partner, Entegra are an extension of your team, assisting with not only lowering food cost, but advisory services to improve business performance. Our team is made up of ex operators, chefs, analysts, and buyers.

Part of the Sodexo family, larger purchasing volumes allow us to secure a higher discount than individual restaurants would be able to negotiate alone.

By negotiating on behalf of thousands of hospitality outlets, we obtain more attractive rates and below market prices for you.

Our clients save money over the long term thanks to our analysis and partnership relationships with suppliers. In addition, our consultants audit your invoices and highlight your savings! In the current climate, there has been no better time to pool your purchases and start making savings without compromising on quality.

Contact Entegra below to learn more about how much we can save you on your food and non-food spend.

Contact details

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Sean Singleton
Managing Director, Ireland

085 117 7112

Irish Hotels Federation | Working Together