Hear firsthand from our team members about the ways they are building your business with produce! Scott Bricker, Jamie Shipley, and David Root are part of our sales and in-market support team, Here they share some of their insights with the impact of the last 9 months on foodservice operators and how fresh cut produce is a critical and relevant solution to sourcing and supply chain.
Fresh cut is a topic that our sales team has discussed for decades, but as they continue to talk with foodservice operators in the past 9 months, there have been major impacts in each of their markets. Fresh cut has become a critical and increasingly relevant solution. Here’s a summary of their fresh cut conversations!
Consistency – One of the biggest things you’ll see with a fresh cut program is consistent product – because it is cut at source to the customer’s spec. The product received is the very same in location 1 as in location 700. This drives the customer experience with the very same product no matter what location they visit in addition to simplification of the supply chain and increasing operation efficiency for the operator.
Food Safety – Because product is cleaned and cut with a grower / processor, there is rigorous certifications and food safety controls in prepping the product vs. the handling of carton product in back of house. The safer the product means less risk for the operator.
Traceability – One difference you’ll see with whole / carton product vs. the fresh cut version is the labeling. Our fresh cut items have labeling and QR codes printed on the bag and carton showing location, date, time, and line the product was prepared on. You don’t see this granular level of information with carton.
Sustainability – You’ll see sustainability throughout the supply chain with fresh cut. With freight only usable product is shipped, leaving the cores and outer leaves to not be shipped across the country but composted by the grower / processor. By operators only receiving ready-to-use product, there is a significant reduction in kitchen waste, refrigeration. Also there is about half of carboard consumed with the packaging of fresh cut vs. carton or whole product.
Efficiency – Efficiency for foodservice operators translates to increasing the kitchen’s output. Less labor is required as the product comes ready to use – this brings significant reduction of labor not needing to wash and cut the product, frees up valuable table space back of house, and overall increases efficiency.
Labor – Labor constraints has been a concern for operators, but more so with labor being redirected to cleaning and sanitation front of house and shortage of labor with more people staying home. Fresh cut frees back of house prep as the grower / processor handles the wash and cut process.
Costs – Carton / Whole product are subject to the volatility of a commodity market and when that market is escalated, it is because product quality is low and product is scarce. Even if you pay an escalated cost for a carton of product, the yield and quality will be diminished. Fresh cut evens out the price and brings more predictability to price. For some operators, the impact of an escalated market may mean a quick change of their ingredients… so for the whole carton produce items impacted by the volatile market, there maybe dozens of steps that have to be changed in the supply chain and prep resulting in a different product at each location.
Fresh cut brings customers consistent yields, cost, safety, and product output. We have been a fan of the simplification and ease of mind it brings our customers and there are many customers big and small that have brought stability to their business by converting to a fresh cut product. The additional benefit our grower / processor GreenGate Fresh delivers is that they all their supply is dedicated to foodservice. Product is never diverted to commodity, which usually takes priority with other grower / processors.
Fresh Cut is the Green choice infographic
Learn more about how fresh cut is a sustainable choice with our downloadable infographic. Don’t forget to share with a friend!