If you just started a catering business, you could find it challenging to find a reliable supplier. Naturally, you want a supplier who can sell quality foods and equipment at a reasonable price. Below is an extensive criterion to help you choose an event catering supplier for your catering business.
You need kitchen equipment such as pan carriers, induction cookers, deep fryers, coolers, dispensers and ovens when starting out. The rule when purchasing this equipment is to ensure the supplier offers a warranty. Moreover, consult other caterers or restaurant owners to establish the performance of the equipment. For instance, assess the energy efficiency of cookers, coolers, ovens and fryers. Moreover, ask technical questions such as how long the equipment takes to cool or heat, its minimum and maximum operating temperatures and the availability of modern controls that improve the functionality and efficiency of the devices. Remember, caterers work under pressure, and their equipment must be able to instantly respond to their needs.
You will also need serving equipment such as dishes, plates, cutlery, cups, chaffing dishes and food storage boxes. Your primary concerns when purchasing this equipment are durability and ease of cleaning. Remember, you will often serve oily and coloured foods. Therefore, you do not want plates, cutlery, dishes, cups or glasses that get stained. Regarding durability, ceramic and glass equipment should be thick enough to withstand minor impact during transport and washing. Also keep in mind that some guests won't treat the dishes perfectly. For instance, they could slam a glass against a ceramic plate or a table. Your catering supplier must guarantee the durability of the equipment they sell.
Finding the right-fit food supplier can be pretty nerve-wracking. Vet several suppliers to choose one that suits your immediate and long-term catering business needs. Start by asking what foods the supplier sells. Consider a supplier with an extensive catalogue. This way, you do not have to worry when your clients ask for a continental or cultural menu comprising hard-to-get ingredients. Then, inquire where the supplier sources their foods. For instance, if one of your business's unique selling points is that you serve fresh and sustainable foods, you need a supplier who guarantees that the foods are fresh and sustainably grown. Besides, you might want to avoid foods sourced from certain countries since their climate and agricultural practices affect the longevity, taste and colour of the cooked foods. Finally, ask the supplier for their price list and inquire about the availability of credit facilities, which can come in handy when the business has little operating capital or are overbooked.